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This section provides general information about the lab, including location, history, facilities, and funding.
The laboratory is located on the campus of the University of New Orleans, in Louisiana. The principal investigator is Dr. Roberto Refinetti. New Orleans is located in the southern United States, by the Gulf of Mexico. The local temperature averages 82°F (28°C) in July and 54°F (12°C) in January with frequent rain all year round. With a population of 400,000 people in the city itself and 1,300,000 in the metropolitan area, New Orleans is a major urban center, known for its distinct music, its exquisite cuisine, and the Mardi Gras festival. For our contact information, please visit the Contact Information section of this web site.

The lab was established by Dr. Refinetti in 1986. As shown in the map below, the lab has moved quite a few times since its inception. We have been in South America and in the West Coast, East Coast, and Midwest of the United States. Often, but not always, we have been associated with universities. We do not actually like to move, so we hope that our current location will be our last location. However, if the past is a hint to the future, we will probably be moving again sometime in the next decade.

 10   2020-
        New Orleans, Louisiana
   9   2014-2020
        Boise, Idaho
   8   1999-2014
        Walterboro, South Carolina
   7   1998-1999
        Birmingham, Alabama
   6   1997-1998
        Mahwah, New Jersey
   5   1992-1997
        Williamsburg, Virginia
   4   1990-1992
        Charlottesville, Virginia
   3   1989-1990
        Champaign, Illinois
   2   1987-1989
        Santa Barbara, California
   1   1986-1987
        São Paulo, Brazil


New Orleans
View of Jackson Square with
St. Louis Cathedral at the center

New Orleans

The UNO Campus
View of the university campus
by Lake Pontchartrain


View of a streetcar (tram)
on St. Charles Avenue


View of the Mercedes Benz Stadium
(the New Orleans Superdome)



The major source of funding for research in the lab is the U.S. government through the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The following are some of the projects that have been funded by these agencies:

NSF IBN-0343917 Homeostatic and Circadian Control of Energy Expenditure April 2004 to March 2007

NIH MH-066826 Circadian Rhythms: Photic Sensitivity and Behavior December 2002 to November 2005

NIH MH-055825 Homeostasis and Circadian Rhythms August 1996 to July 1999

NSF IBN-9507452 Homeostasis, Circadian Rhythmicity, and Behavior September 1995 to August 1998

NSF DUE-9450937 Psychobiology Laboratory Improvement Program August 1994 to June 1996

NIH MH-010146 National Research Service Award October 1991 to June 1992

About Louisiana:

          Capital: Baton Rouge
          Largest city: New Orleans
          U.S. State since: 1812
          Area: 52,000 sq mi (136,000 km2)
          Population: 4,700,000 people
          Median household income: $45,000 (USD per year)
          Racial background: 63% Caucasian
          Universities: see map below

    Universities in Louisiana
The laboratory is well equipped, although the type of research that is conducted does not require sophisticated equipment. Generally, animals are housed in plastic cages inside individual ventilated light-tight chambers. Illumination within the chambers is controlled by electronic timers. Data collection is conducted around-the-clock by computers.

The two variables most commonly monitored are locomotor activity and body temperature. Locomotor activity is monitored by means of running wheels or infrared motion detectors. Body temperature is monitored by radio telemetry, which involves the use of surgically implanted temperature sensitive radio transmitters and separate radio receivers or, more recently, by temperature sensitive PIT tags and custom made antennas.

The Lab: 2020
The red arrow in the picture shows
the location of the lab on the campus
of the University of New Orleans.

Lab 2020

The Lab: 2014
Here are two partial views
of the lab in 2014, then at
Boise State University, in Idaho.

Lab 2014

Lab 2014

The Lab: 2008
This is a partial view of the hallway leading
to six of the nine rooms that made up the
new lab suite to which we moved in 2008
while we were still in South Carolina.

Lab 2008

The Lab: 2000
Here are three partial views of the lab in
the year 2000, when we moved to a satellite
campus of the University of South Carolina.

Lab 2000

Lab 2000

Lab 2000

The Lab: 1996
Here are three partial views of the lab in
1996, a few years after we moved to the
College of William & Mary (in Virginia).

Lab 1996

Lab 1996

Lab 1996

The Lab: 1986
Here are two partial views of the lab
when the lab was first established (at
the University of São Paulo in 1986).

Lab 1986

Lab 1986

© R. Refinetti  ·  ·  All rights reserved