Christian Bravo-Rivera, PhD

2020 K99/R00 Awardee
Photo of Christian Bravo-Rivera, 2020 K99/R00 Awardee
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr. Christian Bravo-Rivera is a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Bo Li at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. He received his bachelor’s degree in General Sciences from the University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras.  He obtained his PhD in Anatomy and Neurobiology in the University of Puerto Rico Medical School, under the mentorship of Dr. Gregory J. Quirk. For his thesis, he developed a novel avoidance behavioral paradigm, which he combined with electrophysiology and pharmacology methods to characterize brain structures mediating fear and avoidance.  His thesis work was supported by an NIMH R36 Dissertation Award.  In January 2016 he joined the Li Lab, where he received an NIMH NRSA F32 Fellowship to investigate how ventral pallidal projections to the lateral habenula control behavioral motivation.  In January 2017 he funded NeuroBoricuas, a non-profit organization that focuses in empowering young Puerto Ricans to engage in science and helps schools in Puerto Rico perform scientific research.  His K99/R00 BRAIN Initiative Award supports his current research about characterizing Pallidal-Habenula circuits governing reward approach and punishment avoidance conflict.  At the end of his postdoctoral training, he plans to return to Puerto Rico to train the next generation of Puerto Rican neuroscientists under NIH's vision.