About the Center for Pain Research (COBRE)

An NIH-funded Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) dedicated to increasing the scientific understanding of chronic pain.

Fostering Cutting-Edge Research Into Pain and Sensory Function

Established in 2012, the Center for Pain Research supports a vibrant and collaborative neuroscience research program at UNE. The goal of the center is to increase the scientific understanding of the neurobiology of chronic pain, facilitating the discovery and development of novel therapies.

Through funding from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences*, the center continues to expand and diversify in exciting ways — recruiting neuroscience faculty to UNE, supporting the work of neuroscience investigators, and launching the research programs of junior faculty via our pilot project program.

The center also supports two state-of-the-art research facilities — the Behavioral Core and the Histology and Imaging Core — which provide expertise, training, and instrumentation to perform cutting-edge research.

*NIGMS grant # P30GM145497, PI-Meng


  1. Create a critical mass of neuroscience researchers necessary to sustain a vibrant and competitive research center. The center supports promising junior scientists, administers a pilot project grant program to fund additional neuroscience projects, and provides start-up funds for the recruitment of new faculty.
  2. Expand UNE’s neuroscience research infrastructure, providing core facilities that allow investigators to carry out cutting-edge research. Two core facilities, the Behavioral Core and the Histology and Imaging Core, provide researchers access to specialized instrumentation and equipment, as well as the training and expertise needed to use it.


The center is pleased to enlist the advice and expertise of its Steering Committee and External Advisory Board.

Steering Committee

Michael Burman
Professor of Psychology
Project Leader, COBRE for Pain Research
Academic Director, School of Social and Behavioral Sciences
Headshot of Geoff Ganter
Professor of Biology, College of Arts and Sciences, School of Biological Sciences
Co-Director, Histology and Imaging Core
Headshot of Diana Goode
Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, COM
Headshot of Russell Ferland
Chair, Department Biomedical Sciences, COM
Headshot of Karen Houseknecht
Professor of Pharmacology
Associate Provost for Research and Scholarship
Headshot of Tamara King
Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, COM
Director, Behavior Core
Headshot of Ian Meng
Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, COM
Director, Center for Pain Research
Director, Center for Excellence in the Neurosciences
Headshot of Derek Molliver
Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, COM
Director, Center for Cell Signaling Research
Headshot of Kerry Tucker
Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, COM

External Advisory Committee

Yves De Koninck, Ph.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience; Scientific Director, Quebec Mental Health Institute; Director of Research, Quebec Integrated Health University; Director, Neurophotonics Center, Laval Université, Quebec, Canada

Jon Levine, M.D., Ph.D., Professor, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, School of Dentistry, University of California, San Francisco

Diane Lipscombe, Ph.D., Professor of Neuroscience, Director of the Carney Institute for Brain Science, Brown University

Frank Porreca, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Anesthesiology, College of Medicine, University of Arizona

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If you have any questions about engaging with the center contact Heather Pollard, COBRE program manager, at hpollard1@sclyw.net or (207) 602-2517.