Stan B. Floresco

Assistant Professor
Department of Psychology

Phone: 604 827-5313

Web pages: Lab webpage



  • PhD University of British Columbia, 2001


  • Neural circuits subserving learning and executive functions
  • behavioural and electrophysiological analyses of limbic-cortical-striatal interactions involved in decision making and behavioural flexibility
  • animal models of schizophrenia and drug addiction

Research Interests

Our research focuses on neural circuits that facilitate different forms of learning and cognition using rodents as a model system. 

We are particularly interested in the interactions between different brain regions within the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system (i.e.; prefrontal cortex, ventral striatum, amygdala, hippocampus, thalamus) that facilitate cognitive processes, such as behavioural flexibility, cost/benefit decision making and reward-related learning. 

Our laboratory uses a multidisciplinary approach, combining behavioural and psychopharmacological assays, along with neurophysiological recordings in both anesthetized and awake preparations.

We are also interested in modeling dysfunction in these brain circuits and corresponding impairments in different forms of cognition associated with different diseases, such as stimulant addiction and schizophrenia. Our approach here is to understand how the normal brain solves these types of problems, and then assess how certain manipulations that model these diseases can alter both neural activity and behaviour mediated by these circuits.

Specific research projects can be found here.

Selected Publications

Prefrontal cortical contribution to risk-based decision making.St Onge JR, Floresco SB.Cereb Cortex. 2010 Aug;20(8):1816-28. Epub 2009 Nov 5.

Differential effects of dopaminergic manipulations on risky choice. St Onge JR, Chiu YC, Floresco SB. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2010 Aug;211(2):209-21. Epub 2010 May 22.

Contributions of the orbitofrontal cortex to impulsive choice: interactions with basal levels of impulsivity, dopamine signalling, and reward-related cues. Zeeb FD, Floresco SB, Winstanley CA.Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2010 Jul;211(1):87-98. Epub 2010 Apr 29.

Neural circuits subserving behavioral flexibility and their relevance to schizophrenia. Floresco SB, Zhang Y, Enomoto T. Behav Brain Res. 2009 Dec 7;204(2):396-409. Epub 2008 Dec 6.   Review.

Perturbations in different forms of cost/benefit decision making induced by repeated amphetamine exposure. Floresco SB, Whelan JM. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2009 Aug;205(2):189-201. Epub 2009 Apr 14.

Fundamental contribution by the basolateral amygdala to different forms of decision making. Ghods-Sharifi S, St Onge JR, Floresco SB. J Neurosci. 2009 Apr 22;29(16):5251-9.

Disruptions in spatial working memory, but not short-term memory, induced by repeated ketamine exposure. Enomoto T, Floresco SB. Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2009 Mar 20. [Epub ahead of print]

Ventral Striatal Dopamine Modulation of Different Forms of Behavioral Flexibility. Haluk DM, Floresco SB. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2009 Mar 4. [Epub ahead of print]

Dopaminergic modulation of risk-based decision making. St Onge JR, Floresco SB. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2009 Feb;34(3):681-97. Epub 2008 Jul 30.

Neural circuits subserving behavioral flexibility and their relevance to schizophrenia.Floresco SB, Zhang Y, Enomoto T. Behav Brain Res. 2008 Dec 6. [Epub ahead of print]

Cortico-limbic-striatal circuits subserving different forms of cost-benefit decision making. Floresco SB, Onge JR, Ghods-Sharifi S, Winstanley CA. Cogn Affect Behav Neurosci. 2008 Dec;8(4):375-89.

Disruption of AMPA receptor endocytosis impairs the extinction, but not acquisition of learned fear. Dalton GL, Wang YT, Floresco SB, Phillips AG. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2008 Sep;33(10):2416-26. Epub 2007 Nov 28.


Courses Taught

PSYC 304 Brain & Behaviour