Sophomore Seminars

Ouch it Hurts! The Comparative Neurobiology of Pain


Pain is a protective mechanism in both humans and animals, preventing further bodily injury. However, continued unchecked, the pain process can become extremely detrimental. The neurobiology of pain has a complex pathway. What we know today about pain processing is just a glimpse of this intricate process. This class will focus on understanding the basic neurobiology of pain pathways, and will include the study of the physiology, pharmacology, and clinical aspects of effective pain management. Students will examine current scientific literature and lead discussions. In addition, laboratory tours will expose students to contemporary experimental methodologies. Guest lectures will highlight pain research from Stanford and other institutions. At the completion of this course, students will have a basic understanding of the comparative neurobiology of pain.

Meet the Instructor(s)

Cholawat Pacharinsak, DVM, PhD

Cholawat Pacharinsak is a veterinary anesthesiologist, an assistant professor, and the director of Anesthesia, Pain Management, and Surgery in the Department of Comparative Medicine, Stanford School of Medicine. He has a Ph.D. in pain neuroscience, and is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Anesthesiologists (DACVA). His research interests include understanding the neurobiology of cancer pain and acute pain models using behavioral and electrophysiological techniques. He also focuses on how to control pain effectively in a clinical setting.