The OCG lab studies how synapses form, how they’re organized for specific release properties, and how they’re reorganized to modulate circuit function. We also focus on identifying and characterizing new conserved synaptic genes, and developing gene editing approaches for in vivo screening.

The O’Connor-Giles lab prioritizes upholding a safe, accessible, inclusive and equitable environment for all across the spectrum of identities and lived experiences. We support and encourage all lab members to bring their unapologetic, authentic selves to our team to thrive as scientists, mentors, educators and, most importantly, as individuals. We accomplish this through our shared values of empathy, respect, collaboration and accountability, and our dedication to healthy and open communication.

We’re in the Brown University Neuroscience Department and the Carney Institute for Brain Science and affiliates with the the Neuroscience Graduate Program, the Molecular Biology, Cell Biology and Biochemistry Graduate Program, and the Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology Graduate Program.

Life in the Lab

  • Tailgating Brown Football October 2023 We invited other labs to join our tailgate before the staff football game this year. The weather was a bit of a bummer - as was the outcome - the Brown Bears lost to the Rhode Island Rams. We are hoping to make this tailgate a tradition! Read More
  • Lab Outing to Martha’s Vineyard September 2023 The lab ventured to Martha's Vineyard to kick off the 2023-2024 school year. We experienced beautiful hikes and scenery, cute houses and plenty of ice cream! Read More
  • Tailgating Brown Football October 2022 The lab tailgated before the football game and cheered on the Brown Bears v UPenn. Brown won 34-31 ... Hooray! Read More
  • Celebrating another amazing school year May 2022 How is it already May? We went to India Point Park to celebrate the end of the school year and say goodbye to our graduating seniors. Read More
  • Ice Cream Lab Outing September 2021 A trip to Ives Street for some ice cream - YUM! Read More
  • Summer Kayaking Adventure August 2021 We went kayaking in Lincoln Woods to take full advantage of the summer weather. Everyone had a blast! Read More
  • Halloween Party October 2020 Celebrating Halloween in style over zoom! Read More
  • Back in Lab! July 2020 We are safely back in the lab and enjoying being able to work with the flies again! Read More
  • Missing Lab! April 2020 Although we have been working hard remotely during the pandemic, we really miss lab and can’t wait to get back! Until then, posting some pictures from before the ramp down. Read More
  • Celebrating our Rotation Students January 2020 We had a fun night at Nick’s celebrating an enjoyable and busy round of rotations. It was so great getting to know Kevin and Tania! Read More
  • Summer Fun! August 2019 We had a blast this summer in lab and around Providence! We doubled down on our love for donuts and went to a few Waterfires as a group. There was a post doc retreat that Rajan and Scott went to put on by The Carney Institute, where they learned how to sail! Read More
  • Lab Pun Party July 2019 We celebrated one year here at the Neuroscience Department with a small gathering of some of our neighboring labs that helped us settle in and get off to a great start. We challenged each lab to bring a dish with a corresponding science pun name. Some of our favorites are pictured below. Here’s to another… Read More
  • Summer Lab Outing June 2019 We made our way over to Federal Hill for a delicious meal, great conversation, a nice walk and amazing dessert. What better way to celebrate the beginning of summer and some new additions to our lab! Read More
  • Lab Soirée January 2019 We had a lot of fun at our Lab Soirée! We all enjoyed the great food, amazing discussions, and, of course, euchre! Read More
  • Thank you Joseph! January 2019 Former graduate student and current postdoctoral researcher with Judith Eisen and Phil Washbourne generously came to share his many years of experience setting up and breaking down rigs at the CSH Drosophila Neurobiology course to help us set up our glowing new physiology rig. It was a wonderful visit — full of science, mounds of… Read More
  • Ramón y Cajal lab outing November 2018 We were amazed and inspired by the experience of seeing Ramón y Cajal’s drawings in person. Could have spent days at The Beautiful Brain: The Drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal on loan to the MIT Museum from  the Cajal Institute in Madrid. Together with a food-filled day in Boston, this will be hard to… Read More
  • Fall at Sidney Frank Hall November 2018 These trees line the walkway next to our buidling. And all the outdoor plants were brought in, so we are surrounded by beautiful trees and plants! Read More