Jari Willing

Professor, Department of Psychology
(419) 372-8335
Email: jwillin@bgsu.edu
Office: Room 249, Psychology Building
Lab Page: N/A

Taking Graduate Students? Yes
Sponsoring Undergraduate Research? Yes

Research Interests:

  • The role of steroid hormones in brain development and cognitive behavior
  • Interactions between environmental factors, the endocrine system and neural development
  • Effects of endocrine disruptors on the mesocortical dopamine system
  • Effects of adolescent blue light exposure on brain development and cognition 

I am currently involved in several lines of research in the field of developmental neuroendocrinology. In one project, we are examining the synergistic effects of maternal infection and common endocrine-disrupting toxicants on development of the prefrontal cortex and executive functions in perinatally exposed offspring. Additionally, we are conducting another series of experiments aimed at assessing the effects of various agricultural practices on neurodevelopment and cognitive maturation. Third, we are interested in the developmental ontogeny of dopaminergic cells of the midbrain during adolescence, with a particular focus on how pubertal hormones regulate dopamine cell number.  Lastly, we are conducting a study to assess the effects of nightly blue light exposure throughout adolescence on development of the prefrontal cortex, hippocampus and learning/memory ability. 

Selected Publications:

Flanigan KAS, Czuba MI, Riesgo VR, Rúa MA, Stevenson LM, Willing J. Developmental exposure to corn grown on Lake Erie dredged material: a preliminary analysis. Front Behav Neurosci. 2023 Apr 21;17:987239. doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2023.987239. PMID: 37153937; PMCID: PMC10160390

Vogt ME, Riesgo VR, Flanigan KAS, Willing JG. Housing Environment Affects Pubertal Onset, Anxiety-like Behavior, and Object Interaction in Male and Female Long Evans Rats. J Am Assoc Lab Anim Sci. 2022 May 1;61(3):241-247. doi: 10.30802/AALAS-JAALAS-21-000119. Epub 2022 May 5. PMID: 35512999; PMCID: PMC9137291.

Sellinger EP, Riesgo VR, Brinks AS, Willing J, Juraska JM. Perinatal phthalate exposure increases developmental apoptosis in the rat medial prefrontal cortex. Neurotoxicology. 2021 Dec;87:167-173. doi: 10.1016/j.neuro.2021.09.007. Epub 2021 Sep 29. PMID: 34599995; PMCID: PMC8595871.

Walker DM, Bell MR, Flores C, Gulley JM, Willing J, Paul MJ. Adolescence and Reward: Making Sense of Neural and Behavioral Changes Amid the Chaos. J Neurosci. 2017 Nov 8;37(45):10855-10866. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1834-17.2017. PMID: 29118215; PMCID: PMC5678018.

Willing J, Wagner CK. Progesterone Receptor Expression in the Developing Mesocortical Dopamine Pathway: Importance for Complex Cognitive Behavior in Adulthood. Neuroendocrinology. 2016;103(3-4):207-22. doi: 10.1159/000434725. Epub 2015 Jun 10. PMID: 26065828; PMCID: PMC4675705.

Courses Taught:

  • PSYC 2700 Quantitative Methods I
  • PSYC 3350 Psychoneuroendocrinology
  • PSYC 4400 Developmental Psychobiology

Updated: 06/17/2024 12:38PM