Lust, Chocolate and Prairie Voles: The Neuroscience of Pleasure and Love

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Brown’s Towne Lounge, 189 Lincoln St. NE, Salem


Get there early if you want a seat (trust me!)

Is the brain chemistry behind our love for chocolate equivalent to that which drives infatuation with a new lover, the love of a particular song, or addiction? How does the brain sort out pleasure and discomfort? What drives our decisions to stay with one person for life or go from one lover to another, never settling down? This Science Pub will focus on these and other questions that reveal much about how neurochemical changes can have major effects on our behaviors—how we love, what we love, and who we love.

Larry Sherman, PhD, is a full professor in the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology and in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at OHSU and a Senior Scientist at the Oregon National Primate Research Center. He earned his B.A. and M.A., both in Biology, from Reed College and a Ph.D. in Cell Biology and Anatomy from the Oregon Health Sciences University. After conducting post-doctoral research in Molecular Biology at the Genetics Institute in Karlsruhe, Germany, he was an Assistant Professor of Cell Biology and Neurobiology at the University of Cincinnati School of Medicine. He has over 80 publications, serves on numerous national and international scientific panels, and gives lectures throughout the globe on his studies related to finding ways to repair the damaged nervous system, and other topics in neuroscience ranging from music to love. He is the president of the Oregon Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience and was recently named one of the 12 Most Innovative People in Oregon by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry and Portland Monthly Magazine.