Principal Investigator, Linus Pauling Institute
Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine
Office: 357 Linus Pauling Science Center
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mailing/Express Delivery Address:
Kathy Magnusson, D.V.M., Ph.D.
Linus Pauling Institute
Oregon State University
307 Linus Pauling Science Center
Corvallis, OR 97331
I am an aging neuroscientist, interested in how we can prevent or repair the declines that occur during aging in learning and memory ability. I am hoping to figure this out before I forget what the question is.
We have been characterizing changes in the expression of a receptor that is very important for the formation of memories, the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor. This receptor uses glutamate as a transmitter. The NMDA receptor shows greater declines in binding of glutamate with increased age than any of the other glutamate receptors. We've found relationships between NMDA receptor binding and expressions of two NMDA receptor subunits, GluN2B (epsilon2, NR2B) and GluN2A (epsilon1, NR2A), during aging. We have also shown associations between age-related changes in NMDA binding densities and subunit expressions and declines in both short- and long-term memory.
We are continuing to characterize the changes that occur in the NMDA receptor with increasing age. We are currently examining whether increasing the expression of the GluN2B subunit or some of the splice variants of the GluN1 subunit is beneficial to memory in aged animals, how aging affects where the NMDA receptors are located within the neurons, whether inflammation plays a role in the effects of aging on NMDA receptors and whether interventions to enhance Vitamin D or reduce fatty acids will alter the effects of aging on NMDA receptors and memory. We are also trying to determine exactly what role NMDA receptors in the prefrontal cortex play in different forms of memory. Ultimately we want to discover the mechanisms underlying the age-related changes in the NMDA receptor.
In order to enhance the translation of our work, we have recently developed, in collaboration with Jimmy Zhong and Dr. Scott Moffat, Georgia Institute of Technology, a virtual water maze for testing human subjects. This task is designed to be similar to the water maze task that we use to assess memory in mice. We believe that this will enhance our ability to transition from screening interventions in mice to testing them in humans, by using the same task.
The lab's main goal is to find interventions into aging that will help to maintain the quality of life into old age. We're also interested in helping to better understand the function of the NMDA receptor in different brain regions.
Recently, we have also begun to examine the role of that the gut microbiota and high energy diets play in cognitive abilities. We have found that animals fed a high sucrose diet show deficits in early learning and those fed either a high fat or high sucrose diet have trouble with cognitive flexibility. Certain alterations in the composition of the gut microbiota showed relationships to these cognitive problems. We are pursuing evidence of whether these deficits are due to diet alone or the microbiota.
|1990||Post-Doc, Psychobiology, University of California, Irvine, CA|
|1989||Ph.D., Vet. Anatomy/Neuroscience, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN|
|1982||D.V.M., University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN|
|1980||B.S., University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN|
|2012-present||Principal Investigator, Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University|
|2007-present||Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Oregon State University|
|2005-2007||Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Oregon State University|
|2002-2005||Affiliate Faculty, Department of Biological Structure, School of Medicine, University of Washington|
|2002-2005||Associate Professor, WWAMI Medical Education Program, University of Idaho|
|2002-2005||Associate Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science, University of Idaho|
|1999||Visiting Scientist, Young & Penney Laboratory, Neurology Research, Massachusetts General Hospital|
|1995-2002||Associate Professor, Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University|
|1990||Visiting Assistant Researcher, Cotman Laboratory, Department of Psychobiology, University of California-Irvine|
|1989-1995||Assistant Professor, Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University|
|1986-1989||Research Fellow, Department of Veterinary Biology, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota|
|1984-1986||Veterinary Medical Associate / Teaching Assistant, Department of Veterinary Biology, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota|
|1982-1984||Veterinarian, Nordic Veterinary Service, Hoffman, Minnesota|
|1978-1982||Lab Technician, Mastitis Laboratory, Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota|
|2014-2017||NIH OppNet Short-term Career Development Award, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health|
|2010||National Pfizer Distinguished Teacher Award|
|2008||Pfizer Award for Research Excellence|
|2004-2008||Member of National Institutes of Health's Learning and Memory study section|
|1995-2000||NIH Research Career Development Award, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health|
|1992-97||NIH FIRST Award, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health|
|1992-93||American Federation for Aging Research - Research Grant|
|1988||Omicron Delta Kappa Honor Society, University of Minnesota|
|1987||Gamma Sigma Delta, Agricultural Honor Society, University of Minnesota|
|1986-91||NIH Physician Scientist Award, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health|
|1986||Finalist, Jan Langman Award for Outstanding Student Presentation, AAA|
|1986||Louise Dosdall Fellowship for Women in Sciences, University of Minnesota Graduate School (declined because of NIH grant)|
|1982||Phi Zeta, Veterinary Honor Society, University of Minnesota|
|1976||Freshman Women's Honor Society, Utah State University|
|Member||Society for Neuroscience|
|Member||Gerontological Society of America|
|Member||American Aging Association|
|Member||American Association of Veterinary Anatomists, World Association of Veterinary Anatomists|
|2004-2008||Member of NIH Learning and Memory Study Section|
Marquez-Loza AM, Elias V, Wong CP, Ho E, Bermudez M, Magnusson KR. (2017) Effects of ibuprofen on cognition and NMDA receptor subunit expression across aging. Neuroscience 344:276-292.
McDougall M, Choi J, Magnusson KR, Truong L, Tanguay R, Traber MG. (2017) Chronic vitamin E deficiency impairs cognitive function in adult zebrafish via dysregulation of brain metabolism due to redox-mediated mechanisms. Free Rad Biol Med 112:308-317.
Zhong JY, Magnusson KR, Swarts ME, Clendinen CA, Reynolds NC, Moffat SD. (2017) The application of a rodent-based Morris water maze (MWM) protocol to an investigation of age-related differences in human spatial learning. Behav Neurosci (in press).
Zamzow D, Elias V, Acosta V, Escobedo E, Magnusson KR. (2016) Higher levels of phosphorylated Y1472 on GluN2B subunits in the frontal cortex of aged mice are associated with good spatial reference memory, but not cognitive flexibility. Age 38:50.
Magnusson KR, Hauck L, Jeffrey BM, Elias V, Humphrey A, Nath R, Perrone A, Bermudez LE. (2015) Relationships between diet-related changes in the gut microbiome and cognitive flexibility. Neuroscience 300:128-140.
Magnusson KR, Brim BL. (2015) The Aging Brain, Reference module in Biomedical Sciences, Michael Caplan (Editor-in-Chief), D.J. Holmes (Section Editor), Elsevier, Inc. 18-Oct-2014.
Zamzow DR, Elias V, Legette LL, Choi J, Stevens, JF, Magnusson KR. (2014) Xanthohumol improved cognitive flexibility in young mice. Behav Brain Res 275:1-10.
Zamzow DR, Elias V, Shumaker M, Larson C, Magnusson KR. (2013) An increase in the association of GluN2B containing NMDA receptors with membrane scaffolding proteins was related to memory declines during aging. J Neurosci 33:12300-12305.
Wong CP, Ho E, Magnusson, KR. (2013) Increased inflammatory response with age is associated with age-related zinc deficiency and zinc transporter dysregulation. J Nutr Biochem 24:353-359.
Brim BL, Haskell R, Awedikian R, Ellinwood NM, Jin L, Kumar A, Foster TC, Magnusson KR. (2013) Memory in aged mice is rescued by enhanced expression of the GluN2B subunit of the NMDA receptor. Behav Brain Res 238:211-226.
Magnusson KR. (2012) Aging of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor - from a mouse's point of view. Future Neurol 7:627-637.
Das SR, Jensen R, Kelsay R, Shumaker M, Bochart R, Brim B, Zamzow D, Magnusson KR. (2012) Reducing expression of GluN1(0XX) subunit splice variants of the NMDA receptor interferes with spatial reference memory. Behav Brain Res 230:317-324.
Das SR, Magnusson KR. (2011) Changes in expression of splice cassettes of NMDA receptor GluN1 subunits within the frontal lobe and memory in mice during aging. Behav Brain Res 222:122-133.
Magnusson KR, Das SR, Kronemann D, Bartke A, Patrylo PR. (2011) The effects of aging and genotype on NMDA receptor expression in growth hormone receptor knockout (GHRKO) mice. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 66:607-619.
Wong CP, Magnusson KR, Ho E. (2010) Aging is associated with altered dendritic cells subset distribution and impaired proinflammatory cytokine production. Exp Gerontol 45:163-169.
Magnusson KR, Brim BL, Das SR. (2010) Selective vulnerabilities of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors during brain aging. Front Aging Neurosci 2:11.
Wong CP, Song Y, Elias VD, Magnusson KR, Ho E. (2009) Zinc supplementation increases zinc status and thymopoiesis in aged mice. J Nutr 139:1393-1397.