Research Day 2020 Wrapup, Poster Session Award Winners

research day 2020 poster award winners

The Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center hosted its annual Alzheimer’s Disease & Related Disorders Research Day on March 5, 2020, at the Discovery Building on the UW-Madison campus. More than 220 scientists and researchers from across campus attended the half-day event. 

The research day poster session included more than 50 poster presentations. The following is a list of poster abstract award winners:

  • Best Fellow, Post Doc, or Research Scientist Poster: Taryn James, PhD, “Effects of Menopausal Hormone Therapy on Auditory Attention and Working Memory: Importance of a Baseline Marker of Cognitive Status”
  • Best Graduate Student or Research Specialist Poster: Elizabeth Evans, MS, “Validation of Connected Speech from Picture Description as a Marker for Cognitive Change in African-American Participants from the Milwaukee Site of Wisconsin Registry for Alzheimer's Prevention (WRAP)”
  • Best Undergraduate Student Poster: Peter Rehani, “Gene Regulatory Networks (GRN) as a Means of Producing Novel Alzheimer's Disease Genes of Interest”


Research day keynote speaker Jessica Langbaum, PhD, Banner Alzheimer's Institute, offered a presentation on the Alzheimer’s Prevention Initiative, which was established to launch a new era in Alzheimer’s prevention research, accelerate the evaluation and approval of prevention therapies, and find ones that work as soon as possible. 

Wisconsin ADRC REC Scholar and Alzheimer’s disease investigator Nicole Rogus-Pulia, PhD, CCC-SLP, offered a presentation on dysphagia, or swallowing difficulties, in people with dementia, and encouraged a more proactive approach to managing the disorder.

Five abstract submissions to the poster session were chosen to present oral abstracts. The following is a list of oral abstract presenters and abstract titles:

  • Alex Birdsill, PhD, “Trajectory of Clinical Symptoms Accelerates after 10 Years of Amyloid”
  • Shenikqua Bouges, MD, “Effect of Metabolic Syndrome Risk Factors on Processing Speed in 3 Racial Groups” 
  • Alejandra Gutierrez, BS, “J20 Alzheimer’s Disease Mice Exhibit an Altered Circadian Actigraphy Profile”
  • Cynthia Kelm-Nelson, PhD, “Muscle Gene Expression May Coincide with Vocal and Swallowing Changes in Translational Rat Model of Parkinson’s Disease”
  • Kecia Doyle Greene, MS, “Systematic Review of Physical-Activity-Focused Interventions for Adult Caregier-Care Recipient Dyads: What’s Best for Spousal Caregivers?”

Photo caption: 2020 Alzheimer's Disease & Related Disorders Research Day poster session winners are pictured here with Wisconsin ADRC leadership. From left to right: Barbara Bendlin, PhD, Wisconsin ADRC Research Education Component (REC) leader; Elizabeth Evans, MS, Best Graduate Student or Research Specialist Poster Winner; Taryn James, PhD, Best Fellow, Post Doc, or Research Scientist Poster Winner; Peter Rehani, Best Undergraduate Student Poster Winner; Sanjay Asthana, MD, Wisconsin ADRC director.