Craig S. Atwood

Atwood Profile Pic
Associate Professor, Department of Medicine; Health Science Specialist, Geriatrics Research, Education & Clinical Core, VA Hospital; Research Director, Laboratory for Endocrinology, Aging & Disease


Ph.D. University of Western Australia

Lab Website:

Research Focus:

Endocrinology of Alzheimer's Disease and Aging

Research Strength:

Endocrinology of Aging; Neurobiology of Disease; Neurogenesis during Embryogenesis and Adulthood

Research Description:

Research in my laboratory draws together our interests and expertise in reproductive endocrinology and neuroscience in order to examine experimentally the hormonal regulation of aging and Alzheimer’s disease. The basic premise behind the research in my laboratory is that hormones that regulate reproduction in mammals act in an antagonistic pleiotrophic manner to control aging via cell cycle signaling; promoting growth and development early in life in order to achieve reproduction, but later in life, in a futile attempt to maintain reproduction, become dysregulated and drive senescence.

Based around this premise, there are a number of research themes in the laboratory. The first major theme examines the etiology of endocrine dyscrasia in regulating cognitive senescence and neurodegenerative diseases with particular reference to Alzheimer’s disease. Ongoing projects include 1) the regulation of neurosteroid synthesis in the brain and its impact on brain health and disease, 2) gene-gene association studies of the steroidogenic pathway and linkage to Alzheimer’s disease, 3) hormonal regulation of the blood-brain barrier, and 4) the hormonal regulation of AβPP and tau expression and processing. The second theme examines the hormonal regulation of embryogenesis and ongoing projects in this theme include 1) the pleiotropic functions of AβPP during human stem cell differentiation, and 2) the hormonal regulation of human embryonic stem cell proliferation and differentiation during early embryogenesis. The third major theme examines the hormonal regulation of cell cycle signaling, endoreduplication and aberrant cell cycle re-entry in diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and prostate cancer.


Please see PubMed for most recent publications