Charles F. Stevens is Professor and the Vincent J. Coates Chair in Molecular Neurobiology at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. The work in his laboratory centers on mechanisms responsible for synaptic transmission. These problems are approached by a combination of molecular biological, electrophysiological, anatomical, and theoretical methods. Dr. Stevens and his research team study neurons both in dissociated cell culture and in brain slices, and also investigate the function of individual membrane proteins of importance for synaptic transmission. One main current research focus is the various mechanisms used by the central nervous system for the short- and long-term regulation of synaptic strength. A second principal project uses a combination of methods to elucidate the molecular basis to neurotransmitter release at synapses.