New Functions of Progesterone Featured in New Brinton Lab's Paper Published in Frontiers

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Emerging data indicate that progesterone has multiple non-reproductive functions in the central nervous system to regulate cognition, mood, inflammation, mitochondrial function, neurogenesis and regeneration, myelination and recovery from traumatic brain injury. The impact of clinically used progestogens and developing selective PR modulators for targeted outcomes in brain is a critical avenue of investigation as the non-reproductive functions of PRs have far-reaching implications for hormone therapy to maintain neurological health and function throughout menopausal aging.

Brinton Labs Publish New Paper on the Inducement by Estradiol-17 of Rodent Hippocampal Neural Progenitor Cell (NPC) Proliferation in Vitro, in Vivo, and After Brain Injury

Monday, March 24, 2008

Estrogens regulate the development, maturation, survival, and function of multiple types of neurons in multiple brain regions. A recent advance in our understanding of estrogen action in brain is that estradiol-17 can promote neurogenesis in rat brain in vivo and proliferation of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) in vitro. 

Brinton Named to Blue Ribbon Panel

January 28, 2008
School of Pharmacy professor joins elite colleagues from across the country to advise the National Institute on Mental Health.
By Kukla Vera

  Photo/Steven Heller

Photo/Steven Heller

Roberta Diaz Brinton, professor of pharmacology and pharmaceutical sciences at the USC School of Pharmacy, has been named a member of the National Institute of Mental Health Blue Ribbon Panel. 

The panel is convened every 10 years to advise leaders of the National Institutes of Health and the National Institute of Mental Health on the direction and development of the latter group’s intramural research program for the coming decade. 

The panel is chaired by Solomon Snyder of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. A host of neuroscience experts from the nation’s top universities make up the panel membership. 

“It is an honor to serve with this group,” said Brinton, who holds the R. Pete Vanderveen Chair in Therapeutic Discovery and Development. “My colleagues on the committee include a Nobel laureate and members of the National Academy of Science and come from the leading universities in the nation.” 

The work of the panel revolves around a review of the National Institute of Mental Health’s Division of Intramural Research Programs. In this division, scientists investigate a full range of subjects – from mechanisms of brain function at the cellular and molecular levels to clinical investigations into the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mental illness. 

The blue ribbon panel sets the course for the development and direction of the division’s research efforts in the next 10 years. This, in turn, impacts the direction of extramural research, as the National Institutes of Health strive to create a complementary environment between the two. 

Brinton is currently the primary investigator on a four-school, $8 million grant examining the impact of hormone therapy on the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.