Molecular regulation of higher cortical circuits
The Arnsten Lab studies the molecular regulation of the recently evolved cortical circuits that subserve higher cognition, including differences across the cortical hierarchy and species. The lab has discovered specialized molecular properties needed for dynamic representations in working memory (e.g., magnified calcium signaling), which confer vulnerability to cognitive deficits, tau pathology, and degeneration when dysregulated by stress and/or inflammation. This work informs strategies for therapeutic interventions, including the successful translation of guanfacine (IntunivTM) for treating cognitive disorders.
Amy Arnsten created the Neuroscience undergraduate major at Brown University in 1976 and received her PhD in Neuroscience from UCSD in 1981. She came to Yale as a post-doctoral fellow with Patricia Goldman-Rakic in 1982, became an Assistant Professor in 1986, and is currently the Albert E. Kent Professor of Neuroscience. Amy is married to Professor Christopher van Dyck, who founded and directs the Yale Alzheimer's Disease Research Unit, with whom she shares two adult children, James (rock musician) and Laura (physician).