LaTasha Crawford, VMD, PhD, DACVP

Department of Pathobiological Sciences
Office: 3124

LaTasha Crawford, VMD, PhD, DACVP

Titles and Education

  1. Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  2. BS (Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry), 1998, Yale University
  3. PhD (Neuroscience), 2010, University of Pennsylvania
  4. VMD 2011, University of Pennsylvania
  5. Residency (Pathology Postdoctoral Fellowship), Anatomic Pathology, Johns Hopkins University, 2011-2014
  6. Diplomate of the American College of Veteinary Pathologists (Anatomic Pathology), 2017
  7. Postdoctoral Fellowship, Johns Hopkins Neurosurgery Pain Research Institute, Baltimore MD 2014-2018



The Crawford lab uses a comparative neuroscience approach to understand how your sense of touch and your sense of pain dysfunction in the face of disease with long term goal of improving the diagnosis and treatment of pain and peripheral neuropathies. Emerging evidence in the field suggests that different sensory neurons subtypes contribute to distinct modalities of sensation and are likely to show distinct susceptibility to toxic injury and disease.  The Crawford lab studies pathologic changes in specific subsets of touch and pain neurons to understand how that dysfunction contributes to sensory deficits, mechanical allodynia, and chronic pain across different models of disease.  Studies using transgenic mice enable characterization of cell-type-specific, molecular, neurophysiologic, and morphologic changes in sensory neurons, including nerve terminals in the skin.  Building upon knowledge gained from mouse models, the Crawford lab also engages in comparative studies in tissues from other species to help gain understanding of peripheral nervous system dysfunction in veterinary and human patients with complex diseases.  

Clinical Interests

Dr. Crawford's clinical interests include anatomic pathology, neuropathology, and mechanisms of pain and peripheral neuropathy

Graduate Training

Comparative Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program

Neuroscience Training Program

Recent Publications

  1. LaTasha K. Crawford and Michael J. Caterina. Functional Anatomy of the Sensory Nervous System: Updates from the Neuroscience Bench. Toxicologic Pathology, In Press
  2. LaTasha K. Crawford Revisiting PNS Plasticity: How Uninjured Sensory Afferents Promote Neuropathic Pain. In preparation.
  3. Wyler SC, Spencer WC, Green NH, Rood BD, Crawford L, Craige C, Gresch P, McMahon DG, Beck SG, Deneris E. Pet-1 switches transcriptional targets postnatally to regulate maturation of serotonin neuron excitability.  J Neurosci. 2016 Feb 3;36(5): 1758-1774 PMID: 26843655 PMCID: PMC4737783

  4. Richard R. Sim, Matthew C. Allender, LaTasha K. Crawford, Allison N. Wack, Kevin J. Murphy, Joseph L. Mankowski, and Ellen Bronson, Ranavirus epizootic in captive eastern box turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) with concurrent herpesvirus and mycoplasma infection: management and monitoring, J Zoo Wildl Med. 2016 Mar 47(1): 256-270 PMID: 27010285

  5. Sasseville VG, Mankowski JL, Baldessari A, Harbison C, Laing S, Kaliyaperumal  S, Matz-Rensing  K, Miller AD, Schmidt LD, Kaplan-Kees  J, Dick EJ Jr, Reader JR, Liu D, Crawford LK, Lane JH, Corner SM, Pardo ID, Evans MG, Murnane R, Terio KA, 2013, “Meeting Report: Emerging Respiratory Viral Infections and Nonhuman Primate Case Reports” Vet Pathol. 2013 Nov;50(6):1145-53. PMID: 23839235.

  6. LaTasha K. Crawford, Shumaia F. Rahman**, and Sheryl G . Beck, 2013, "Social stress alters inhibitory synaptic input to distinct subpopulations of raphe serotonin neurons", ACS Chem Neurosci. 2013 Jan 16;4(1):200-9. PMID: 23336059 PMCID: PMC3547472

  7. LaTasha K. Crawford, 2012. Vets and Pets: Domesticated Animals and the Veterinarians Who Care for Them. In: M. Alexander, P. Lenahan and A. Pavlov (eds.) Cinemeducation: Using Film and Other Visual Media in Graduate and Medical Education, Volume 2 pp326-337 London: Radcliffe Publishing. Book Chapter.

  8. Crawford, LaTasha K. 2011, “Veterinary Medicine: Influencing Human and Animal Medicine” Bellwether Magazine: Vol. 1: No. 74, Article 13

  9. Yadav PN, Abbas AI, Farrell MS, Setola V, Sciaky N, Huang XP, Kroeze WK, Crawford LK, Piel DA, Keiser MJ, Irwin JJ, Shoichet BK, Deneris ES, Gingrich J, Beck SG, Roth BL, 2011, "The presynaptic component of the serotonergic system is required for clozapine's efficacy”, Neuropsychopharmacology. 2011 Feb;36(3):638-51. PMID: 21048700 PMCID: PMC3055689

  10. LaTasha K. Crawford, Caryne P. Craige, and Sheryl G. Beck, 2011, "Glutamatergic input is selectively increased in dorsal raphe subfield 5-HT neurons: role of morphology, topography, and selective innervation" Eur J Neurosci. 2011 Dec;34(11):1794-806. PMID: 22098248; PMCID: PMC3228412.

  11. LaTasha K. Crawford, Caryne P. Craige, and Sheryl G. Beck, 2010, "Increased intrinsic excitability of lateral wing 5-HT neurons of the dorsal raphe: a mechanism for selective neuronal activation in stress circuits,” J Neurophysiol. 2010 May;103(5):2652-63. PMID:20237311; PMC2867584

  12. Jessica K. Lerch-Haner, Dargan Frierson, LaTasha K. Crawford, Sheryl Beck, and Evan S. Deneris, 2008, "Serotonergic transcriptional programming determines maternal behavior and offspring survival,” Nat Neurosci. 2008 Sep;11(9):1001-3. PMID:19160496 PMCID: PMC2679641