Christine Lattin

Christine Lattin

Assistant Professor
CDIB Division

BA: Swarthmore College, 2001
MS in Biology: Eastern Kentucky University, 2008
PhD: Tufts University, 2014
Post Doctorate: Yale University, 2014-2018

Office: 202 Life Sciences Buildiing

Twitter: @c_lattin

Area of Interest

The focus of my lab’s research is to understand how different neurotransmitters and hormones help wild animals successfully cope with challenges from predators to disease. The hormone and neurotransmitter pathways we study are very similar in in all vertebrates from fish to birds to mammals, so sparrow and starling research can help us understand how these systems work in humans and other animals. Our current research has three main areas of focus:

  1. the neurobiology of neophobia
  2. the effects of climate change on sibling competition
  3. interactions between the immune system and the stress response.

Selected Publications

*denotes undergraduate researchers

Kelly, T. R., A. Cannon*, K. R. Stansberry, M. G. Kimball and C. R. Lattin. 2024. Changes in hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis function, immunity, and glucose during acute Plasmodium relictum infection in house sparrows (Passer domesticus). General and Comparative Endocrinology. 345:114388. DOI: 10.1016/j.ygcen.2023.114388.

Kimball, M. G., C. T. Harding*, K. E. Couvillion*, K. R. Stansberry, T. R. Kelly, and C. R. Lattin. 2023. Effect of estradiol and predator cues on behavior and brain responses of captive female house sparrows (Passer domesticus). Frontiers in Physiology 14:1172865: doi: 10.3389/fphys.2023.1172865.

S. N. Parks, T. N. Tully, A. L. Settle and C. R. Lattin. 2023. Handling and restraint induce a significant increase in plasma corticosterone in Hispaniolan Amazon parrots (Amazona ventralis). American Journal of Veterinary Research DOI: 10.2460/ajvr.22.12.0223, pp 1-7.

Kimball, M. G., E. B. Gautreaux*, K. E. Couvillion*, T. R. Kelly, K. R. Stansberry, and C. R. Lattin. 2022. Novel objects alter immediate early gene expression globally for ZENK and regionally for c-Fos in neophobic and non-neophobic house sparrows. Behavioral Brain Research 428:113863.

Lattin, C. R., T. R. Kelly, M. W. Kelly, and K. M. Johnson. 2022. Constitutive gene expression differs in three brain regions important for cognition in neophobic and non-neophobic house sparrows (Passer domesticus). PLOS One.

Madden, A. A., A. M. Oliverio, P. J. Kearns, J. B. Henley, N. Fierer, P. T. B. Starks, B. E. Wolfe, L. M. Romero, and C. R. Lattin. 2022. Chronic stress and captivity alter the cloacal microbiome of a wild songbird. Journal of Experimental Biology.

Kelly, T. R., A. E. Vinson*, G. M. King, and C. R. Lattin. 2022. No guts about it: captivity, but not neophobia phenotype, influences the cloacal microbiome of house sparrows (Passer domesticus). Integrative Organismal Biology

Kelly, T. R., K. I. Lynch*, K. E. Couvillion*, J. N. Gallagher*, K. R. Stansberry, M. G. Kimball, and C. R. Lattin. 2022. A transient reduction in circulating corticosterone reduces object neophobia in male house sparrows. Hormones and Behavior 137:105094.

Kelly, T. R., M. G. Kimball, K. R. Stansberry, and C. R. Lattin. 2020. No, you go first: phenotype and social context affect house sparrow neophobia. Biology Letters 16:20200286.

Lattin, C. R., D. P. Merullo, L. V. Riters, and R. E. Carson. 2019. In vivo imaging of D2 receptors and corticosteroids predict behavioural responses to captivity stress in a wild bird. Scientific Reports 9:10407.

Review papers

Madison, F. N., V. P. Bingman, T. V. Smulders, and C. R. Lattin. 2024. A bird’s eye view of the hippocampus beyond space: behavioral, neuroanatomical, and neuroendocrine perspectives. Hormones and Behavior 157:105451.

Kimball, M. G. and C. R. Lattin. 2024. The "seven deadly sins" of neophobia experimental design. Integrative and Comparative Biology icad127,

Lattin, C. R. and T. R. Kelly. 2020. Glucocorticoid negative feedback as a potential mediator of trade-offs between reproduction and survival. General and Comparative Endocrinology 286:113301.