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Laboratory of Behavioral Neuroscience

Susan Resnick, PhD, Chief

The fundamental scientific paradigm guiding research in the Laboratory of Behavioral Neuroscience (LBN) is the study of individual differences and age-related changes in cognition, personality, brain structure and function, and their influences on age-related changes.

The Laboratory of Behavioral Neuroscience

  1. Conducts basic and clinical research on individual differences in cognition, personality, and affect,
  2. Investigates the neural contributions to these individual differences,
  3. Investigates the influence of age on these traits and states and their reciprocal influence on cognitive and mental health, well-being, and adaptation,
  4. Examines predictors and modifiers of age-related neurodegenerative diseases and age-associated changes in behavior, predispositions, and brain-behavior associations,
  5. Identifies early markers of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive decline, and examines factors that promote the maintenance of cognitive health.

Laboratory investigators employ a variety of methods, including experimental, longitudinal, epidemiological, neuroimaging, biomarker, neuropathological, and genetic methods in the analyses of behavioral, psychological, and biological aspects of aging.

List of Portfolio/Research Areas

  • Cognitive and brain aging;
  • Neuroimaging biomarkers of cognitive decline, impairment and resilience;
  • Blood-based biomarkers of cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's Disease using proteomic and metabolomic methods;
  • Systems-level analyses integrating multi-OMICs approaches to identify biological mechanisms and drug targets associated with Alzheimer’s disease
  • Molecular, cellular, anatomic and imaging approaches in animal models of cognitive aging and resilience;

Findings and Publications

Bilgel M, An Y, Zhou Y, Wong DF, Prince JL, Ferrucci L, Resnick SM. Individual estimates of age at detectable amyloid onset for risk factor assessment. Alzheimers Dement. 2016 Apr;12(4):373-9.

Armstrong NM, An Y, Beason-Held L, Doshi J, Erus G, Ferrucci L, Davatzikos C, Resnick SM. Predictors of neurodegeneration differ between cognitively normal and subsequently impaired older adults. Neurobiol Aging. 2019; Mar; 75:178-186.

An Y, Varma VR, Varma S, Casanova R, Dammer E, Pletnikova O, Chia CW, Egan JM, Ferrucci L, Troncoso J, Levey AI, Lah J, Seyfried NT, Legido-Quigley C, O’ Brien R, Thambisetty M. Evidence for Brain Glucose Dysregulation in Alzheimer’s Disease. Alzheimer’s and Dementia. 2018 14(3):318-329 

Varma VR, Oommen AM, Varma S, Casanova F, An Y, Andrews RM, O’Brien R, Pletnikova O, Troncoso JC, Toledo J, Baillie R, Arnold M, Kastenmueller G, Nho K, Doraiswamy M, Saykin AJ, Kaddurah-Daouk R, Legido-Quigley C, Thambisetty M. Brain and Blood Metabolite Signatures of Pathology and Progression in Alzheimer’s Disease. PLOS Medicine. 2018 15(1): e1002482

Liang, X, Hsu, L-M, Ash, JA, Hanbing, L, Rapp, PR* Yang, Y.* (*co-corresponding). Functional connectivity of hippocampal CA3 predicts cognitive aging via CA1-frontal circuit. Cereb. Cortex, 2020. Jun 30;30(8):4297-4305

Weiler, M, Stieger, KC, Long, JM, Rapp, PR. Transcranial magnetic stimulation in Alzheimer’s disease: are we ready? eNeuro 7: ENEURO.0235-19.2019.


Brain Aging and Behavior Section
         Cognitive Testing Group
Clinical and Translational Neuroscience Section
Neurocognitive Aging Section
Multimodal Imaging of Neurodegenerative Disease (MIND) Unit


Laboratory of Behavioral Neuroscience Staff