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Dr. Matthew Lazenka

Assistant Professor of Biology

(434) 528-2525
Center for Natural Sciences, Room 338



  • Ph.D. in Neuroscience, Medical College of Virginia
  • B.S. in Psychology, East Tennessee State University


Research Interests

  • Cannabinoids
  • Drug abuse
  • Nociception


Courses Taught

  • Neurobiology (BIOL 435)
  • Human Neurology and Neuroanatomy (BIOM 610)
  • Human Physiology (BIOM 515)



  • Lazenka, M.L., et al., Dissociable effects of the kappa opioid receptor agonist nalfurafine on pain/itch-stimulated and pain/itch-depressed behaviors in male rats. Psychopharmacology, 2018. 235(1): p. 203-213.
  • MF Lazenka, BA Hutsell. Preclinical models for assessment of antidepressant abuse potential. Curr Sex Health Rep, 2017.
  • Lazenka, M.F., et al., Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol experience influences deltaFosB and downstream gene expression in prefrontal cortex. Cannabis Cannabinoid Res, 2017. 2(1): p. 224-234.
  • Lazenka, M.F., et al., Relief of pain-depressed behavior in rats by activation of D1-like dopamine receptors. J Pharmacol Exp Ther, 2017. 362(1): p. 14-23.
  • Lazenka, M.F., et al., Sex differences in abuse-related neurochemical and behavioral effects of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in rats. Pharmacol Biochem Behav, 2017. 152: p. 52-60.
  • Lazenka, M.F. and S.S. Negus, Oral modafinil facilitates intracranial self-stimulation in rats: comparison with methylphenidate. Behav Pharmacol, 2017. 28(4): p. 318-322.
  • Lazenka, M.F., F.G. Moeller, and S.S. Negus, Effects of caffeine and its metabolite paraxanthine on intracranial self-stimulation in male rats. Exp Clin Psychopharmacol, 2015. 23(2): p. 71-80.