Laura Buczek

M.S. 2021

Thesis Title:

Reducing cue-induced cocaine relapse: targeting the AMPK pathway with metformin

Current Position:

Research Associate, AAV Biology
Asklepios BioPharmaceutical, Inc. (AskBio)

Undergraduate Institution and Major:

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, B.S. in Biology, 2017

Graduate Advisor:

Sade Spencer, Ph.D., Department of Pharmacology


  • Julia Lemos
  • Ben Saunders

Research Categories:

  • Behaviorial and Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Addiction

What got you interested in research?

I initially became interested in research through my undergraduate coursework in biology and chemistry, that strongly emphasized conducting research and understanding how to effectively ask and answer questions. I completed five semesters of undergraduate research where I was able to work on two individual research projects. I enjoyed working in a lab as an undergraduate student and decided to pursue research even further after graduation. After working as a research technician/lab coordinator in a behavioral neuroscience lab post-graduation, I became very interested in the questions being asked in this field and knew I wanted to pursue research in the field of neuroscience.

Undergraduate Publications:

  • Buczek L, Magliaccio J, Petrovich GD. Hedonic eating: Sex differences and characterization of orexin activation and signaling. Neuroscience. 2020; in press.
  • Faes C, Ilich A, Sotiaux A, Sparkenbaugh EM, Henderson MW, Buczek L, Beckman JD, Ellsworth P, Noubouossie DF, Bhoopat L, Piegore M, Renoux C, Bergmeier W, Park Y, Ataga KI, Cooley B, Wolberg AS, Key NS, Pawlinski R. Red blood cells modulate structure and dynamics of venous clot formation in sickle cell disease. Blood. 2019;133:2529-2541.
  • Antoniak S, Cardenas JC, Buczek LJ, Church FC, Mackman,N, Pawlinski R. Protease-Activated Receptor 1 Contributes to Angiotensin II-Induced Cardiovascular Remodeling and Inflammation. Cardiology. 2016;136:258-268.

Why did you choose the University of Minnesota?

I chose UMN because of the strong sense of community and the many research opportunities aligned with my interests. It seemed like the perfect intersection of being able to pursue research in the areas of neuroscience that I am most interested in, while being able to experience a supportive and collaborative environment.

Who is your student mentor, and what is the best advice they gave you?

Alexandra Scott:  She gave me a list of things to consider when choosing rotations and a mentor.

Favorite Itasca Memory:

Paddleboard yoga on the lake!