Loading...
Sign in to edit your profile (add interests, mentoring, photo, etc.)

    Ruth I. Wood, PhD

    TitleChair and Professor of Cell and Neurobiology
    SchoolKeck School of Medicine of USC
    DepartmentCell and Neurobiology
    AddressBMT 401 A 1333 San Pablo Street
    Health Sciences Campus
    Los Angeles California 90089
    Phone+1 323 442 1980
    vCardDownload vCard
      Other Positions
      TitleAssociate Dean For Appointments and Promotions


      Collapse Overview 
      Collapse Overview
      My research investigates neural circuits for behavior, including social behavior, addiction and mood. In particular, we are interested in how gonadal steroid hormones act in the brain, both during development and in the adult, to effect sex differences and modify behavior.

      One line of research investigates the neurobiology of anabolic-androgenic steroid (AAS) abuse. AAS are drugs of abuse, but the potential for dependence and addiction remains unclear. Studies from our laboratory have shown that male and female rodents will voluntarily self-administer testosterone and other AAS. This suggests that AAS are potentially addictive, independent of their effects on muscle mass or athletic performance. We are currently exploring how AAS alter decision-making and response to risk.

      We are also interested in the behavioral endocrinology of cooperation: how hormones modulate cooperative behavior. We have developed operant models to test cooperation in rats working for food reward. Our studies investigate the effects of oxytocin and prolactin to promote cooperation, and the effects of AAS to inhibit cooperative behavior.


      Collapse Biography 
      Collapse Education and Training
      University of California, Davis, Davis, CABS03/1986Animal Science
      University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MIPhD01/1991Physiology
      University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MIPost-doc05/1994Anatomy & Cell Biology

      Collapse Bibliographic 
      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.
      List All   |   Timeline
      1. Li G, Wood R. Male rats play a repeated donation game. Physiol Behav. 2017 Mar 14; 174:95-103. PMID: 28302575.
        View in: PubMed
      2. Wallin-Miller KG, Chesley J, Castrillon J, Wood R. Sex differences and hormonal modulation of ethanol-enhanced risk taking in rats. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2017 Mar 07; 174:137-144. PMID: 28324816.
        View in: PubMed
      3. Wallin-Miller K, Li G, Kelishani D, Wood R. Anabolic-androgenic steroids decrease dendritic spine density in the nucleus accumbens of male rats. Neuroscience. 2016 Aug 25; 330:72-8. PMID: 27238893.
        View in: PubMed
      4. Wood R, Kim JY, Li GR. Cooperation in rats playing the iterated Prisoner's Dilemma game. Anim Behav. 2016 Apr 1; 114:27-35. PMID: 27019513.
        View in: PubMed
      5. Wood R, Knoll AT, Levitt P. Social housing conditions and oxytocin and vasopressin receptors contribute to ethanol conditioned social preference in female mice. Physiol Behav. 2015 Nov 1; 151:469-77. PMID: 26282397.
        View in: PubMed
      6. Wallin KG, Alves JM, Wood R. Anabolic-androgenic steroids and decision making: Probability and effort discounting in male rats. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2015 Jul; 57:84-92. PMID: 25900595.
        View in: PubMed
      7. Wallin KG, Wood R. Anabolic-androgenic steroids impair set-shifting and reversal learning in male rats. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2015 Apr; 25(4):583-90. PMID: 25638026.
        View in: PubMed
      8. Brewer CJ, Wood R, Wood JC. mRNA regulation of cardiac iron transporters and ferritin subunits in a mouse model of iron overload. Exp Hematol. 2014 Dec; 42(12):1059-67. PMID: 25220979.
        View in: PubMed
      9. Kim JY, Wood R. Anabolic-androgenic steroids and appetitive sexual behavior in male rats. Horm Behav. 2014 Sep; 66(4):585-90. PMID: 25200201.
        View in: PubMed
      10. Cooper SE, Wood R. Androgens and opiates: testosterone interaction with morphine self-administration in male rats. Neuroreport. 2014 May 7; 25(7):521-6. PMID: 24488032.
        View in: PubMed
      11. Kent K, Butler K, Wood R. Ethanol induces conditioned social preference in male mice. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2014 Apr; 38(4):1184-92. PMID: 24460901.
        View in: PubMed
      12. Pope HG, Wood R, Rogol A, Nyberg F, Bowers L, Bhasin S. Adverse health consequences of performance-enhancing drugs: an endocrine society scientific statement. Endocr Rev. 2014 Jun; 35(3):341-75. PMID: 24423981.
        View in: PubMed
      13. Cooper SE, Goings SP, Kim JY, Wood R. Testosterone enhances risk tolerance without altering motor impulsivity in male rats. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2014 Feb; 40:201-12. PMID: 24485492.
        View in: PubMed
      14. Brewer C, Otto-Duessel M, Wood R, Wood JC. Sex differences and steroid modulation of cardiac iron in a mouse model of iron overload. Transl Res. 2014 Feb; 163(2):151-9. PMID: 24018182.
        View in: PubMed
      15. Wood R, Rice R. Ethanol-induced conditioned partner preference in female mice. Behav Brain Res. 2013 Apr 15; 243:273-7. PMID: 23369716.
        View in: PubMed
      16. Wood R, Armstrong A, Fridkin V, Shah V, Najafi A, Jakowec M. 'Roid rage in rats? Testosterone effects on aggressive motivation, impulsivity and tyrosine hydroxylase. Physiol Behav. 2013 Feb 17; 110-111:6-12. PMID: 23266798.
        View in: PubMed
      17. Wood R, Stanton SJ. Testosterone and sport: Current perspectives. Horm Behav. 2012 Jan; 61(1):147-55. PMID: 21983229.
        View in: PubMed
      18. Wood R, Vertelkina NV, Antzoulatos E. Testosterone as a discriminative stimulus in male rats. Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2011 Nov; 100(1):185-90. PMID: 21893083.
        View in: PubMed
      19. Antzoulatos E, Jakowec MW, Petzinger GM, Wood R. MPTP Neurotoxicity and Testosterone Induce Dendritic Remodeling of Striatal Medium Spiny Neurons in the C57Bl/6 Mouse. Parkinsons Dis. 2011; 2011:138471. PMID: 21765998.
        View in: PubMed
      20. Gorton LM, Vuckovic MG, Vertelkina N, Petzinger GM, Jakowec MW, Wood R. Exercise effects on motor and affective behavior and catecholamine neurochemistry in the MPTP-lesioned mouse. Behav Brain Res. 2010 Dec 1; 213(2):253-62. PMID: 20472000.
        View in: PubMed
      21. Antzoulatos E, Jakowec MW, Petzinger GM, Wood R. Sex differences in motor behavior in the MPTP mouse model of Parkinson's disease. Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2010 Jun; 95(4):466-72. PMID: 20347863.
        View in: PubMed
      22. Wood R. The many facets of sex and drugs. Horm Behav. 2010 Jun; 58(1):1. PMID: 20303970.
        View in: PubMed
      23. Kanayama G, Brower KJ, Wood R, Hudson JI, Pope HG. Treatment of anabolic-androgenic steroid dependence: Emerging evidence and its implications. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2010 Jun 1; 109(1-3):6-13. PMID: 20188494.
        View in: PubMed
      24. Sato SM, Johansen JA, Jordan CL, Wood R. Membrane androgen receptors may mediate androgen reinforcement. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2010 Aug; 35(7):1063-73. PMID: 20137860.
        View in: PubMed
      25. Kanayama G, Brower KJ, Wood R, Hudson JI, Pope HG. Anabolic-androgenic steroid dependence: an emerging disorder. Addiction. 2009 Dec; 104(12):1966-78. PMID: 19922565.
        View in: PubMed
      26. Kanayama G, Brower KJ, Wood R, Hudson JI, Pope HG. Issues for DSM-V: clarifying the diagnostic criteria for anabolic-androgenic steroid dependence. Am J Psychiatry. 2009 Jun; 166(6):642-5. PMID: 19487399.
        View in: PubMed
      27. Schauwecker PE, Wood R, Lorenzana A. Neuroprotection against excitotoxic brain injury in mice after ovarian steroid depletion. Brain Res. 2009 Apr 10; 1265:37-46. PMID: 19236850.
        View in: PubMed
      28. Gorton LM, Mahoney MM, Magorien JE, Lee TM, Wood R. Estrogen receptor immunoreactivity in late-gestation fetal lambs. Biol Reprod. 2009 Jun; 80(6):1152-9. PMID: 19164175.
        View in: PubMed
      29. Antzoulatos E, Magorien JE, Wood R. Cell proliferation and survival in the mating circuit of adult male hamsters: effects of testosterone and sexual behavior. Horm Behav. 2008 Nov; 54(5):735-40. PMID: 18775431.
        View in: PubMed
      30. Vuckovic MG, Wood R, Holschneider DP, Abernathy A, Togasaki DM, Smith A, Petzinger GM, Jakowec MW. Memory, mood, dopamine, and serotonin in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-lesioned mouse model of basal ganglia injury. Neurobiol Dis. 2008 Nov; 32(2):319-27. PMID: 18718537.
        View in: PubMed
      31. Sato SM, Schulz KM, Sisk CL, Wood R. Adolescents and androgens, receptors and rewards. Horm Behav. 2008 May; 53(5):647-58. PMID: 18343381.
        View in: PubMed
      32. Triemstra JL, Sato SM, Wood R. Testosterone and nucleus accumbens dopamine in the male Syrian hamster. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2008 Apr; 33(3):386-94. PMID: 18249072.
        View in: PubMed
      33. Wood R. Anabolic-androgenic steroid dependence? Insights from animals and humans. Front Neuroendocrinol. 2008 Oct; 29(4):490-506. PMID: 18275992.
        View in: PubMed
      34. Wood R. Sex and drugs: comment on "Evidence for involvement of erbeta and rgs9-2 in 17-beta estradiol enhancement of amphetamine-induced place preference behavior" by Silverman and Koenig. Horm Behav. 2007 Aug; 52(2):143-5. PMID: 17553500.
        View in: PubMed
      35. Ballard CL, Wood R. Partner preference in male hamsters: steroids, sexual experience and chemosensory cues. Physiol Behav. 2007 May 16; 91(1):1-8. PMID: 17316716.
        View in: PubMed
      36. Nagypál A, Wood R. Region-specific mechanisms for testosterone-induced Fos in hamster brain. Brain Res. 2007 Apr 13; 1141:197-204. PMID: 17276422.
        View in: PubMed
      37. Wood R. Anabolic steroids: a fatal attraction? J Neuroendocrinol. 2006 Mar; 18(3):227-8. PMID: 16454806.
        View in: PubMed
      38. DiMeo AN, Wood R. Self-administration of estrogen and dihydrotestosterone in male hamsters. Horm Behav. 2006 Apr; 49(4):519-26. PMID: 16388806.
        View in: PubMed
      39. Dimeo AN, Wood R. ICV testosterone induces Fos in male Syrian hamster brain. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2006 Feb; 31(2):237-49. PMID: 16157456.
        View in: PubMed
      40. Triemstra JL, Nagatani S, Wood R. Chemosensory cues are essential for mating-induced dopamine release in MPOA of male Syrian hamsters. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2005 Aug; 30(8):1436-42. PMID: 15702137.
        View in: PubMed
      41. Ballard CL, Wood R. Intracerebroventricular self-administration of commonly abused anabolic-androgenic steroids in male hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus): nandrolone, drostanolone, oxymetholone, and stanozolol. Behav Neurosci. 2005 Jun; 119(3):752-8. PMID: 15998196.
        View in: PubMed
      42. Wood R. Reinforcing aspects of androgens. Physiol Behav. 2004 Nov 15; 83(2):279-89. PMID: 15488545.
        View in: PubMed
      43. DiMeo AN, Wood R. Circulating androgens enhance sensitivity to testosterone self-administration in male hamsters. Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2004 Oct; 79(2):383-9. PMID: 15501316.
        View in: PubMed
      44. Triemstra JL, Wood R. Testosterone self-administration in female hamsters. Behav Brain Res. 2004 Sep 23; 154(1):221-9. PMID: 15302128.
        View in: PubMed
      45. Peters KD, Hom SM, Wood R. Testosterone and chemosensory detection in male Syrian hamster. Horm Behav. 2004 Sep; 46(3):341-8. PMID: 15325234.
        View in: PubMed
      46. Wood R, Johnson LR, Chu L, Schad C, Self DW. Testosterone reinforcement: intravenous and intracerebroventricular self-administration in male rats and hamsters. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2004 Jan; 171(3):298-305. PMID: 14557917.
        View in: PubMed
      47. Chu L, Wood R. Castration, dopamine and food choice: a cost/benefit test in male hamsters. Behav Brain Res. 2002 Oct 17; 136(1):137-42. PMID: 12385798.
        View in: PubMed
      48. Wood R. Oral testosterone self-administration in male hamsters: dose-response, voluntary exercise, and individual differences. Horm Behav. 2002 May; 41(3):247-58. PMID: 11971658.
        View in: PubMed
      49. Wood R, Williams SJ. Steroidal control of male hamster sexual behavior in Me and MPOA: effects of androgen dose and tamoxifen. Physiol Behav. 2001 Apr; 72(5):727-33. PMID: 11337005.
        View in: PubMed
      50. I'Anson H, Manning JM, Herbosa CG, Pelt J, Friedman CR, Wood R, Bucholtz DC, Foster DL. Central Inhibition of Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Secretion in the Growth-Restricted Hypogonadotropic Female Sheep1. Endocrinology. 2000 Feb 01; 141(2):520-527. PMID: 28200940.
        View in: PubMed
      51. Kosut SS, Wood R, Herbosa-Encarnacio N C, Foster DL. Prenatal Androgens Time Neuroendocrine Puberty in the Sheep: Effect of Testosterone Dose. Endocrinology. 1997 Mar 01; 138(3):1072-1077. PMID: 28199586.
        View in: PubMed