Karen Gylys, PhD, MS, BSN
|Title(s)||Professor and Chair, Physiological Nursing|
|School||School of Nursing|
Karen Hoppens Gylys is a nurse and a neuroscientist who joined the faculty of the UCSF School of Nursing in 2023 as Chair of the Physiological Nursing Department. Dr. Gylys was previously a faculty member in the UCLA School of Nursing and the UCLA Brain Research Institute, and a member of the UCLA Neuroscience Interdepartmental Program since 1998.
Dr. Gylys earned a diploma and then a B.S. degree in Nursing, followed by a M.S. degree in Human Development at the University of Texas, Dallas. She received her Ph.D. in Neuroscience, with a major in neuropharmacology, at UCLA in 1993, and did postdoctoral work on molecular mechanisms of opioid tolereance.
Her laboratory research is focused on understanding the dysfunction and loss of synapses that occurs in Alzheimer's disease (AD), and she has pioneered the use of flow cytometry for the analysis of synaptosomes. Her projects use primarily human postmortem AD samples and mouse models of the disease. Research interests include neuroinflammation and APOE risk for AD, the single biggest genetic risk, which can also be also protective. Recent projects have isolated brain cell types from human postmortem samples in order to study microglial and astrocyte effects on AD progression. New projects look at exosomes as biomarkers for AD, and as mechanisms in AD pathology and signaling between cortical cell types.
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