Estrogen plays a crucial role in coordinating the neuroendocrine events that control sexual development, sexual behavior and reproduction. Additionally, estrogen modulates numerous additional facets of brain function. In humans, the primary biologically active form of estrogen is 172-estradiol (E2). E2 has been implicated in several non-reproductive brain functions such as protection against brain injury, involvement in learning and memory as well as promoting the formation of synapses. Additionally, a growing body of literature has shown that E2 treatment may alleviate neuronal dysfunctions from Alzheimer
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These studies will begin to determine the novel mechanisms of changes in gene expression caused by age on a critical gene in the female brain. These insights could lead to development of therapeutics that result in improved cognition in the postmenopausal woman by potentially preventing changes in ER2 gene expression. Furthermore, we will develop a new methodology that will be critical for examining epigenetic changes in gene expression in a temporal and spatial manner in neural tissue with heterogeneous cell populations.
|Wilson, Melinda E; Sengoku, Tomoko (2013) Developmental regulation of neuronal genes by DNA methylation: environmental influences. Int J Dev Neurosci 31:448-51|
|Wilson, Melinda E (2013) Stroke: understanding the differences between males and females. Pflugers Arch 465:595-600|
|Westberry, Jenne M; Trout, Amanda L; Wilson, Melinda E (2011) Epigenetic regulation of estrogen receptor beta expression in the rat cortex during aging. Neuroreport 22:428-32|