Oxidative Stress and Bipolar Disorder Trajectories (CURRENTLY ENROLLING)

We are studying brain mechanisms related to changes in mood with aging in bipolar disorder. Results of this study may help us find new treatments to improve mood outcomes with aging. This study is funded by the National Institute of Mental Health.

Stress Response and Neural Network Function in Women with Vasomotor Symptoms (CURRENTLY ENROLLING)

In this study, we are examining stress mechanisms related to hot flashes in women. This study is part of the Brigham/Harvard Center for Stress and Neural Regulation of Reproductive Aging Health Outcomes, funded by the National Institutes of Health.

Emotion Regulation and Stress in Mood Disorder (CURRENTLY ENROLLING)

We are studying brain chemistry and activation involved in emotion regulation in mood disorder, and the impact of stress. This study is funded by the Harvard Brain Science Institute.


Neuroimaging biomarkers of lithium response in bipolar disorder

In this study, we used high-resolution 7 Tesla neuroimaging to examine brain features related to response to lithium treatment in bipolar disorder. We found differences in brain activation in prefrontal and limbic regions in response to a fearful faces task in people who responded to lithium compared to people who did not respond. We also identified localized relative atrophy in the CA1 region of the hippocampus in lithium non-responders as compared to responders. These results provide a foundation for future studies to identify brain features that can predict lithium response. This study was funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and the Johns Hopkins Catalyst.


A pilot fMRI study of lithium response in bipolar disorder. Rootes-Murdy K, Glazer K, Mondimore FM, Goes FS, PGBD Study, Zandi PP, Bakker A, DePaulo JR Jr, Mahon PB. (2019) Psychiatry Res Neuroimaging, 286:1-3.

A 7 Tesla Amygdalar-Hippocampal Shape Analysis of Lithium Response in Bipolar Disorder. Athey TL, Ceritoglu C, Tward DJ, Kutten KS, DePaulo JR, Glazer K, Goes FS, Kelsoe JR, Mondimore F, Nievergelt CM, Rootes-Murdy K, Zandi PP, Ratnanather JT, Mahon PB. (2021) Front Psychiatry, 12:614010.

Effect of Biological Sex and Circulating Sex Hormones on Oxidative Stress

In this study, we examined sex differences in brain mechanisms related to bipolar disorder. We found correlations between circulating levels of female sex hormones and brain markers of oxidative stress. These preliminary results suggest potentially broad implications for women’s brain health. This study was funded by the Brigham & Women’s Hospital Program for Interdisciplinary Neuroscience, Women’s Brain Initiative Pilot.

Publications in preparation

Linking the roles of stress and GABAergic function in women

We studied the relationship between brain function and stress in women. We identified correlation between prefrontal GABA levels and perceived stress. This study was funded by the Brigham & Women’s Hospital Connors Center, WHISPR Pilot.

Publications in preparation