Emily C. Bruggeman, Ph.D., M.Sc.
Research Specialist Lead
Lab phone: 404-727-1837
I received my B.A. in Psychology from University of North Carolina at Asheville, then attended graduate school at Georgia State University. I earned my Master’s degree in Neuroscience studying mechanisms by which high-energy diets (e.g., high fructose diets) impair cognitive function in rats. I then transitioned to a molecular biology lab to research the epigenetic regulation of energy homeostasis, where I was supported by fellowships through Georgia State’s Center for Obesity Reversal and the American Heart Association Pre-Doctoral Grant for my dissertation work. I discovered that deficiency of a neuronal DNA methyltransferase enzyme attenuates obesity in mice and alters expression of estrogen receptor-a (a regulator of energy balance) in the ventromedial hypothalamus. After graduating with my Ph.D. in Neuroscience, I accepted a postdoctoral position in the Hypothalamic Research Division at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center to investigate the role of the hormone ghrelin in Prader-Willi Syndrome (a rare form of genetic obesity) in mouse models. In October 2017, I joined the Yao Lab as a Research Specialist Lead to help advance the understanding of epigenetic modifications in neurodegenerative disease. In my spare time, I enjoy taking ballet classes, cooking new recipes, and am an avid lover of all things French.