Dr Rachel A. Kohman

My background is in interdisciplinary field of psychoneuroimmunology, studying the intersection of behavioral neuroscience and immunology. The long-term goal of my research program is to characterize the functional consequences of increased inflammation within the brain, identify the neural mechanisms of these changes, and identify interventions to attenuate the aversive effects of neuroinflammation. A large focus of my work is in understanding how factors such as age, sex, diet and exercise influence the response to an immune challenge and subsequent effects on cognitive function. Currently, my lab is evaluating the contribution of age-related increases in neuroinflammation to cognitive decline and reductions in hippocampal neurogenesis and whether increasing physical activity will reduce neuroinflammation. Additionally we’re evaluating the effects of consuming a diet high in fat content on neuroinflammatory measures and the behavioral responses to an immune challenge. To address these and other questions my lab employs a variety of behavioral tests and biological techniques such as immunohistochemistry, real-time RT-PCR, ELISA, and confocal microscopy. The objective of this research is to gain a better understanding of the interactions between the brain and the immune system, to facilitate development of novel pharmaceutical treatments, and explores non-drug based therapies in the form of physical exercise to attenuate chronic neuroinflammation.

There are 1 included publications by Dr Rachel A. Kohman :

TitleDateViewsBrief Description
Exercise reduces activation of microglia isolated from hippocampus and brain of aged mice 2013 1380 Background: Aging is associated with low-grade neuroinflammation that includes basal increases in proinflammatory cytokines and expression of inflammatory markers on microglia. Exercise can reduce neuroinflammation following infection in aged anima...