Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit
"'I don't know anything any more, and what I do know I can't remember!' So says my friend Leah, and we all share her fear of dementia. When I heard of an opportunity to take part in one of Dr. Newhouse's memory studies, I jumped at the chance, and I enjoyed it so much, I actually did it again! CNRU staff are warm, respectful and fun; they make the work a real pleasure. Now that I'm too old to die young, I'm really fussy about how I spend my time. I'm proud to have taken part in these studies, and I would gladly do it again."
Estrogen, Menopause, and the Brain Research Program
The overarching goal of this program is to conduct clinical research studies that seek to understand the mechanisms behind changes in cognition and behavior that occur in women after menopause. Menopause produces significant and sustained changes in the levels of sex hormones (e.g. estrogen) that have profound effects on brain functioning and may produce changes in mood, memory, and learning. These changes may account for gender-related differences between older women and men, especially regarding rates of neurodegenerative disorders, some of which tend to be higher in women (e.g. Alzheimer's disease).
The studies utilized intensive, repeated-measures designs focusing on the effects of neuropharmacologic probes combined with sophisticated cognitive testing, functional brain imaging, and behavioral paradigms in older women. Most of the studies take place at the University of Vermont General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) and Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA).
We are most grateful for the enthusiastic participation of our post-menopausal women volunteers, without whom none of this research could take place.
Faculty and staff involved in this research program include: