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Drs. Nathan Hermann and Krista Lanctot

In neuropsychopharmacology, researchers led by Drs. Krista Lanctôt and Nathan Herrmann are trying to optimize the pharmacological management of neuropsychiatric symptoms that are commonly associated with many central nervous system disorders such as dementia, traumatic brain injury (TBI), stroke and coronary artery disease.

They are trying to determine the underlying neurobiology of neuropsychiatric symptoms by examining the predictors of treatment response, the use of novel pharmacological agents, neuroimaging techniques and the occurrence of adverse drug events.

Dr. Lanctôt previously published findings that link less blood flow in a specific area of the brain with more aggression in people with Alzheimer's disease (AD). Recently, she discovered fewer serotonin receptors in the same region of the brain patients with AD.

Dr. Herrmann found that antipsychotic use is associated with an increased risk for death compared with nonuse among older adults with dementia. In particular, the risk for death was greatest with older (conventional) antipsychotics compared with newer (atypical) antipsychotics, though both were high.

Visit the neuropsychopharmacology research group for more information.