2021 Bruce McEwen Fellows
Sarah Carp, UC-Davis
Sarah Carp is interested in studying the intersection of social behavior and aging in both healthy and disease states. As a postdoc in the Bliss-Moreau Lab she will be using a nonhuman primate model of early neuropathology related to Alzheimer’s disease in order to examine social consequences of amyloid beta oligomers as well as potential protective effects of social interaction on induced neuropathological changes.
Sarah Wolf, Indiana University
Sarah Wolf studies resilience to aging through the lens of telomere dynamics in a wild songbird. As a Bruce McEwen fellow, Sarah will be using a long-term dataset on tree swallows to investigate how social aggression influences telomere length, and vice versa. In exploring these bidirectional links over a lifetime, she will assess how variation and plasticity in social behavior may promote or prevent aging.
2021 Travel Award Recipients
Raisa Hernandez Pacheco, Cal State Long Beach
Raisa Hernandez Pacheco’s project focuses on developing continuously structured population models to describe and quantify the prevalence of stability, deterioration, and recovery from disabilities among socially advantaged and disadvantaged subgroups. For this, Raisa will use the Cayo Santiago rhesus macaques as a primate model system to study individual health within social contexts.
Emily Rothwell, UMass Amherst
Neuropsychiatric symptoms (i.e. depression, anxiety, apathy, agitation) are present in nearly all dementia patients, are distressing to caregivers, and can disrupt networks of social support. Little is known about age-related changes in the affective processes that underlie psychological functioning, both in healthy aging and dementia. Emily will study this in marmoset monkeys, who have a short lifespan and naturally develop dementia-like neuropathology. Emily will use this travel award to develop a collaboration with Dr. Eliza Bliss-Moreau, who is an affective neuroscientist with expertise in nonhuman primates. Emily’s project will develop methods to study changes in affective responding, via autonomic nervous system activity, in marmoset monkeys across the lifespan.
Quinn Webber, University of Colorado
Quinn Webber is studying territorial behavior in North American red squirrels in collaboration with Dr. Andrew McAdam and the Kluane Red Squirrel Project. Red squirrels are typically thought of as an asocial species, but squirrels compete for food and territorial competition is an inherently social behavior that may be affected by senescence. Quinn will examine how the relationship between reproductive success and territoriality changes with age using a long-term dataset of red squirrel life-history and behavioral data. This work will inform our understanding of the evolution of senescence within a highly competitive social context.