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School of Medicine Columbia

Faculty and Staff

Daniel Foster, Ph.D.

Title: Assistant Professor
Department: Pharmacology, Physiology & Neuroscience
School of Medicine Columbia
Phone: 803-216-3546

Pharmacology, Physiology & Neuro
Basic Science Bldg 1, Rm D-12

Resources: Laboratory Website
Portrait photo of Daniel Foster


Postdoctoral: Trained at the Warren Center for Neuroscience Drug Discovery at Vanderbilt University (Nashville, Tenn.)

Graduate: Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, Mich.)

Undergraduate: B.S. in Biochemistry/Cell Biology from the Bucknell University (Lewisburg, Pa.)

Research Focus

Our laboratory is interested in understanding how neurotransmission is regulated with the ultimate goal of identifying and validating novel therapeutic targets with which to treat psychiatric disorders. We utilize electrophysiology, fiber photometry, and behavioral pharmacology techniques to study rodent brain circuits that are homologous to those dysregulated in mental health disorders like schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorder. We also use pharmacological tools and genetically modified mice to determine how modulation of specific G-protein coupled receptors can regulate these circuits.

Recent Publications

  • Luessen DJ, Gallinger IM, Ferranti AS, Foster DJ, Melancon BJ, Lindsley CW, Niswender CM, Conn PJ. mGlu1-mediated restoration of prefrontal cortex inhibitory signaling reverses social and cognitive deficits in an NMDA hypofunction model in mice. Neuropsychopharmacology (2022)
  • Garrison AT, Orsi DL, Capstick RA, Whomble D, Li J, Carter TR, Felts AS, Vinson PN, Rodriguez AL, Han A, Hajari K, Cho HP, Teal LB, Ragland MG, Ghamari-Langroudi M, Bubser M, Chang S, Schnetz-Boutaud NC, Boutaud O, Blobaum AL, Foster DJ, Niswender CM, Conn PJ, Lindsley CW, Jones CK, Han C. Development of VU6019650: A potent, highly selective, and systemically active orthosteric antagonist of the M5 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor for the treatment of opioid use disorder. J Med Chem (2022)
  • Foster DJ. Muscarinic receptors: from clinic to bench to clinic. Trends Pharmacol Sci. (2022)
  • Moehle MS, Bender AM,  Dickerson JW, Foster DJ, Qi A, Cho HP, Donsante Y,  Peng W, Bryant Z, Stillwell KJ, Bridges TM, Chang S, Watson KJ,  O’Neill JC, Engers JL,  Peng L, Rodriguez AL, Niswender CM, Lindsley CW, Hess EJ, Conn PJ, Rook JM. Discovery of the first selective M4 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor antagonists with in vivo antiparkinsonian and anti dystonic efficacy. ACS Pharmacol Transl Sci (2021)
  • Foster DJ, Bryant ZK, Conn PJ. Targeting muscarinic receptors to treat schizophrenia. Behavioral Brain Research (2021)
  • Nunes EJ, Rupprecht LE, Foster DJ, Lindsley CW, Conn PJ, Addy NA. Examining the role of muscarinic M5 receptors in VTA cholinergic modulation of depressive-like and anxiety-related behavior in rats. Neuropharmacology (2020)
  • Yohn SE, Foster DJ, Covey DP, Moehle MS, Galbraith J, Garcia-Barrantes PM, Cho HP, Bubser M, Blobaum AL, Joffe ME, Cheer JF, Jones CK, Lindsley CW, Conn PJ. Activation of the mGlu1 metabotropic glutamate receptor has antipsychotic-like effects and is required for efficacy of M4 muscarinic receptor allosteric modulators. Molecular Psychiatry (2020)
  • Reddy IA, Smith NK, Erreger K, Ghose D, Saunders C, Foster DJ, Turner B, Poe A, Albaugh VL, McGuinness O, Hackett TA, Grueter BA, Abumrad NN, Flynn CR, Galli A. Bile diversion, a bariatric surgery, and bile acid signaling reduce central cocaine reward.  PLoS Biology (2018)
  • Walker AG, Sheffler DJ, Lewis AS, Dickerson JW, Foster DJ, Senter RK, Moehle MS, Lv X, Stansley BJ, Xiang Z, Rook JM, Emmittee KA, Lindsley CW, Conn PJ. Co-Activation of metabotropic glutamate receptor 3 and beta-adrenergic receptors modulates cyclic-AMP, long-term potentiation, and disrupts memory reconsolidation. Neuropsychopharmacology (2017)
  • Foster DJ, Conn PJ. Allosteric modulation of GPCRs: new insights and potential utility for treatment of schizophrenia and other CNS disorders. Neuron (2017)
  • Foster DJ, Wilson JM, Remke DH, Mahmood MS, Uddin MJ, Wess J, Patel S, Marnett LJ, Niswender DM, Jones CK, Xiang Z, Lindsley CW, Rook JM, Conn PJ. Antipsychotic like effects of M4 positive allosteric modulators are mediated by CB2 receptor-dependent inhibition of dopamine release. Neuron (2016)

Find Dr. Foster on Google Scholar 

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