Dr. Mary Woo, Professor and Researcher at the UCLA School of Nursing, has been selected to give the third NINR Director's Lecture in May 2013.
"This is an incredible honor for Dr. Woo," said Courtney H. Lyder, dean of the UCLA School of Nursing. "Her research has and continues to advance the science to find treatments for heart failure mortality"
Dr. Woo is an internationally recognized researcher. Her initial groundbreaking research focused on the brain-heart interactions in relation to sudden death risk, particularly in advanced heart failure patients. She was the first investigator to report specific sites of gray-matter loss (parts of the brain damaged/missing) in heart failure patients and that this gray matter loss/brain structure damage is impacted by the amount of sleep disordered breathing and gender.
Dr. Woo has several studies currently funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research/National Institutes of Health including: (1) examining the relationship between sleep and brain structure in heart failure; (2) determining if there is a relationship between short-term memory, thiamine levels (vitamin B1), and brain structure in heart failure; (3).evaluating the impact of a novel treatment (passive foot movement) of sleep-disordered breathing in heart failure; (4) comparing functional brain responses to autonomic nervous system challenges between heart failure and healthy control subjects.
The NINR Director's Lecture is an annual event, designed to bring the nation's top nurse scientists to the NIH campus to share their work and interests with a trans-disciplinary audience. The award was initiated as part of the year-long observation of the Institute's first 25 years at the NIH.