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Christine Schwartz

Specialty area(s)

Neuroscience, Physiology, Hibernation biology

Current courses at UWL

Human Anatomy and Physiology I (BIO 312)

Human Anatomy and Physiology I lab (BIO 312L)

Human Anatomy and Physiology II (BIO 313)

Human Anatomy and Physiology II lab (BIO 313L)

Introductory Neuroscience (NEU 200)


Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Minnesota Duluth

Ph.D., Texas A&M University

B.S., Canisius College

Professional history

My current research focuses on characterizing how the brain functions before and during hibernation in the thirteen-lined ground squirrel. During hibernation, the ground squirrels go through extreme changes in physiology, where the brain goes through periods up to two weeks with very little oxygen or fuel. Humans would suffer extreme brain damage after only a few minutes in this situation, but the hibernating ground squirrel is naturally protected. Even more amazingly, parts of the hibernator brain still function during hibernation. I am interested in both how the brain is naturally protected and how it controls this unique phenotype.

Research and publishing

Ballinger M, Schwartz C, Andrews MT. (2017) Enhanced oxidative capacity of brain mitochondria during
hibernation in the 13-lined ground squirrel. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 312(3):R301-R310.

Smotherman M, Bohn K, Davis K, Schwartz C. (2016) Daily and seasonal patterns of singing by the Mexican free-tailed bat, Tadarida brasiliensis. In: Sociality in Bats. Jorge Ortega, editor, Springer International Publishing, pp. 197-210.

Schwartz C, Ballinger M, Andrews MT. (2015) Melatonin receptor signaling contributes to neuroprotection upon arousal from torpor. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 309(10): R1292-R1300.

Schwartz C, Hampton M, Andrews MT. (2015) Hypothalamic gene expression underlying pre-hibernation satiety. Genes, Brain and Behavior 14(3): 310-318.

Schwartz C, Andrews MT. (2013) Circannual transitions in gene expression: Lessons from seasonal adaptations. Curr Top Dev Biol 105: 247-73.

Schwartz C, Hampton M, Andrews MT. (2013) Seasonal and regional differences in gene expression in the brain of a hibernating mammal. PLOS ONE 8(3): e58427.

Schwartz C and Smotherman M. (2011) Mapping vocalization-related immediate early gene expression in spontaneously echolocating bats. Behav Brain Res 224(2): 358-368.

Tressler J, Schwartz C, Wellman P, Smotherman M. (2011) Regulation of echolocation pulse acoustics by striatal dopamine. J Exp Biol 214: 3238-3247.

Smotherman M, Schwartz C, Metzner W. (2009) Vocal–respiratory interactions in the parabrachial nucleus. In: Handbook of Mammalian Vocalization. Stefan M. Brudzynski, editor, Oxford: Academic Press, pp. 383-392.

Bohn KM, Schmidt-French B, Schwartz C, Smotherman M, Pollak GD. (2009) Versatility and stereotypy of free-tailed bat songs. PLOS ONE 4(8): e6746.

Schwartz C, Bartell P, Cassone V, Smotherman M. (2009) Distribution of 2-[125I]iodomelatonin binding in the brain of Mexican free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis). Brain Behav Evol 73(1): 16-25.

Schwartz C, Tressler J, Keller H, Vanzant M, Ezell S, Smotherman M. (2007) The tiny difference between foraging and communication buzzes uttered by the Mexican free-tailed bat, Tadarida brasiliensis. J Comp Physiol A 193(8): 853-63.