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    Alexandra Elena Ycaza Herrera

    TitlePostdoctoral Scholar Research Associate
    SchoolSchool of Gerontology
    DepartmentGerontology
    Address3715 McClintock Ave., Suite GER #351
    University Park Campus
    Los Angeles California 90089-0191
    Phone+1 213 821 5703
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      My research focuses on the intersection of sex hormones and the stress response. In particular, the ability of estradiol to modulate the cortisol response in women. To investigate how ovarian hormone levels can affect the adrenal cortisol and progesterone responses to stress, I study post-menopausal women using and not using estradiol therapy, pre-menopausal women not using hormonal contraception during various points of the natural menstrual cycle, and women using hormonal contraception during the different phases of the hormonal contraceptive cycle. In testing these effects, I also examine whether the influence of ovarian hormones on the stress response alter the typical effects of stress on cognition.

      I utilize a number of modalities in my research program including behavioral testing, neuroimaging using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) for hormone measurements.


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      University of Southern California, Los AngelesPh.D.05/2014Psychology (Behavioral & Cognitive Neurosciences)

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      Collapse Publications
      Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help.
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      1. Shawn E. Nielsen, Alexandra Ycaza Herrera. Hormones, Brain and Behavior (Pfaff, D.W and Joƫls, M., editors-in-chief). Sex Steroids, Learning and Memory. 2017; 399-422.
      2. Herrera A, Nielsen SE, Mather M. Stress-induced increases in progesterone and cortisol in naturally cycling women. Neurobiol Stress. 2016 Jun; 3:96-104. PMID: 27981182.
        View in: PubMed
      3. Ycaza Herrera A, Mather M. Actions and interactions of estradiol and glucocorticoids in cognition and the brain: Implications for aging women. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2015 Aug; 55:36-52. PMID: 25929443; PMCID: PMC4501869.
      4. Sakaki M, Ycaza-Herrera AE, Mather M. Association learning for emotional harbinger cues: when do previous emotional associations impair and when do they facilitate subsequent learning of new associations? Emotion. 2014 Feb; 14(1):115-29. PMID: 24098924; PMCID: PMC4048706.
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