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Ep. 44: Sex Differences in Alzheimer's Disease with Dr. Roberta Diaz Brinton and Connor Wander

The Straight from a Scientist Podcast

Release Date: 04/09/2019

Women are almost twice as likely to develop Alzheimer's disease as men. However, this is NOT because they live longer. When we look into the aging brain, males and females experience different timelines. The molecular underpinnings of these sex differences could make a huge impact on our understanding of Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Roberta Diaz Brinton is spearheading research into sex differences in Alzheimer's disease. She works to discover how to protect the aging female brain from these increased risk factors.

This episode features another throwback recorded in San Diego, CA, where Connor Wander attended the BrightFocus Alzheimer's Disease Fast Track conference, followed by the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting.


About Dr. Brinton

Dr. Roberta Diaz Brinton leads the Center for Innovation in Brain Science at the University of Arizona that studies diseases of aging, Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s and ALS. Dr. Brinton is an internationally recognized expert in the systems biology of Alzheimer’s disease. She is developing the first regenerative therapeutic to regenerate the degenerated brain. Her analysis focuses on the brain at greatest risk for Alzheimer’s: the aging female brain. Her findings show that the sex difference in Alzheimer’s disease is not because women live longer than men, as commonly thought, but rather because the disease starts earlier in the female brain. Her insights into these key transition states of the aging brain provide therapeutic opportunities to prevent, delay, and treat neurodegenerative disease.


More Information

Read more about Dr. Roberta Diaz Brinton's research and scholarship.

Learn more on the Brinton Lab Website.

The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) is a well-known conference, which drawing 28 thousand people annually. In contrast, AD Fast Track is a much smaller conference put on by BrightFocus, a foundation built to support AD and glaucoma research and awareness. Many of the speakers at the event were directly supported by BrightFocus (Lamb, Brinton, Head, Grinberg).

Alzheimer's disease research is reinventing itself in the wake of past failures. New understandings of disease complexity, paired with recent advances in technology and a renewed surge in funding for research fuels new hope for a cure or treatment. Yet we aren't putting all our eggs in one basket. This series explores Alzheimer's disease research and the variety of research strategies with the common goal of curing Alzheimer's disease.


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