Artistic image of telomeresAME Laboratory: Aging, Metabolism and Emotion

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Welcome to the Aging, Metabolism, & Emotions Center

The AME Center of UCSF’s School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry is at the Center for Health and Community. AME researchers study relations between 1) Types of chronic stress, psychiatric illness, and positive states (e.g., positive emotion, resilience and thriving under adversity; 2) Restorative health behaviors such as sleep, exercise, and mindfulness meditation; and 3) Physiological imprints of stress, such as altered inflammatory immune function, cellular mechanisms underlying vascular health and rejuvenation, adiposity, and, at the cellular level, cellular stress and rate of mitotic cell aging (such as that measured by telomere length). We conduct basic and translational mind to behavior and biology research to understand these complex relations. We also study interventions (in person and mHealth) to improve lifestyle, enhance coping and emotion regulation, and reduce stress. This website shows various projects and publications, as well as events or new findings in this growing field.

Upcoming Talks


Latest News

Soda and Cell Aging: Associations Between Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Consumption and Leukocyte Telomere Length in Healthy Adults From the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys
by Cindy W. Leung, ScD, Barbara A. Laraia, PhD, Belinda L. Needham, PhD, David H. Rehkopf, ScD, Nancy E. Adler, PhD, Jue Lin, PhD, Elizabeth Blackburn, PhD, and Elissa S. Epel, PhD

Read more about it here.

Photograph of Dr. Eli PutermanDr. Eli Puterman and colleagues have shown for the first time that telomere shortening in response to stressful events may happen in as little as one year. The good news is that exercise buffers that!




Photograph of Belinda NeedhamBelinda Needham and colleagues have shown that anxiety is associated with shorter telomers in a nationally representative sample. Read the paper here.




Photograph of Aric A. PratherDr. Aric A. Prather, Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Psychiatry and Associate Director of the Center for Health and Community, has received the 2015 Robert Ader New Investigator Award and will present on his research at the PsychoNeuroImmunology Research Society (PNIRS) meeting, June 3-6, 2015 in Seattle, WA. The Robert Ader New Investigator Award is presented to an outstanding new research scientist who has made exciting basic science or clinical contributions to the field of psychoneuroimmunology.

Chronic stress increases vulnerability to diet-related abdominal fat, oxidative stress, and metabolic risk and Good stress, bad stress and oxidative stress: Insights from anticipatory cortisol reactivity by Kirstin Aschbacher and colleagues are the 12th and 13th most downloaded papers from the journal Psychoneuroendocrinology.




Upcoming Meetings of Interest

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