Gabrielle Britton, PhD

Research Areas:

Our laboratory is dedicated to the study of aging-related health conditions, including cognitive decline and its progression to Alzheimer’s disease; physical and mental health in adults; and cellular and animal studies of physiological/behavioral systems affected by aging. aging and neurodegeneration. The multidisciplinary laboratory conducts research in biomarker discovery (Dr. Alcibiades Villarreal), cellular and animal models of Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related conditions (Dr. María Carreira), adult mental health, including behavioral and cognitive intervention studies (Dr. . Diana Oviedo), and the role of infectious diseases in dementia (Dr. Giselle Rangel). Our funded projects (SENACYT, EULAC, BID) focus on the validation of blood biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease using neuroimaging and CSF-based proteins; the effects of cognitive and physical interventions on the cognitive and mental health of older adults; the identification of factors that can be translated into personalized medicine approaches using Alzheimer’s disease and spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 as models; and the impact of COVID-19 on the cognitive function of older adults. As part of this work, the laboratory has a strong focus on health disparities during the aging process and carries out the Panama Aging Research Initiative – Health Disparities (PARI-HD), the first longitudinal study on brain aging in Panama.

Summary of CV:

She completed a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Vanderbilt University (1991), a Master’s degree in Psychology at Mount Holyoke College (1994), and a PhD in Neuroscience and Psychology at Indiana University, Bloomington (2000). She was a professor in the Faculty of Psychology and the Neuroscience Program at Lafayette College in Pennsylvania (2001-2006), and returned to Panama in 2006 through a repatriation grant from SENACYT. She heads the INDICASAT AIP Neuroscience Center where the research program is focused on aging and age-related health conditions. Her focus is on age-related cognitive decline, including its progression to Alzheimer’s disease. She is a member of the National Research System (SNI) of Panama; she is co-founder and member of the Board of Directors of the Ciencia en Panamá Foundation and member of the Board of Directors of the City of Knowledge Foundation. She was awarded the Enid Cooke de Rodaniche Medal (2022) for her trajectory in health research. In 2011 she co-founded and currently directs the Panama Aging Research Initiative – Health Disparities (PARI-HD), a national and international collaborative research program focused on the psychology and neuroscience of aging in Panama.

Selected publications:

Britton GB, O’Bryant SE, Johnson LA, Hall JR, Villarreal AE, Oviedo DC, Perez-Lao AR, Carreira MB, Panama Aging Research Initiative (2018). Inflammatory biomarkers, depressive symptoms and falls among elderly in Panama. Current Aging Science, 11(4), 236-241. DOI: 2174/1874609812666190215125104. PMID: 30767759.

Britton GB, Okonkwo O. A fresh look at the multi-level social determinants of disparities in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (2023). Alzheimer’s & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring, 15(3):e12481.DOI: 10.1002/dad2.12481. PMID

Britton GB, Urasa S, Huang LK, Villarreal AE, Levey A, Philippakis A, Hu CJ, Yang CC, Mushi D, Oviedo DC, Rangel G, Ho JS, Boshe J, Thompson L, Khemakhem M, Ross M, Carreira MB, Kim N, Joung P, Albastaki O, Kuo PC, Low S, Paddick SM, Kuan YC, Au R (2023). Digital phenotyping: An equal opportunity approach to reducingdisparities in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia research. Alzheimer’s & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring, 15:e12495. DOI:10.1002/dad2.12495.

Flores-Cuadra JA, Madrid A, Fernández PL, Pérez-Lao AR, Oviedo DC, Britton GB, Carreira MB (2021). Critical review of the Alzheimer’s disease non-transgenic models: Can they contribute to disease treatment? Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 82 (S1), S227-S250. DOI: 10.3233/JAD-200870. PMID: 33216029.

Oviedo D, Lezcano H, Perez AR, Villarreal AE, Carreira MB, Isaza B, Wesley L, Grajales SA, FernándezS, Frank A, Britton GB (2018). Vascular biomarkers and ApoE4 expression in mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease. AIMS Neuroscience,5(2), 148-161. DOI: 10.3934/Neuroscience.2018.2.148.

Oviedo DC, Pérez-Lao AR, Flores-Cuadra JA, Villarreal AE, Carreira MB, Grajales SA, Britton GB (2021). Apolipoprotein ε4 affects multiple domains of neuropsychological functioning in a sample of elderly Hispanics. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 82 (S1), S313-S319. DOI: 10.3233/JAD-200921. PMID: 33074238.

Posada Rodríguez C, Rodríguez-Araña S, Oviedo DC, Carreira MB, Flores-Cuadra J, Villarreal AE, Rangel G, Britton GB (2021). Depression mediates the association between occupational complexity and late-life cognition in Hispanics. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease Reports, 5 (1), 881-886. DOI 10.3233/ADR-210040.

Torres-Atencio I, Carreira M, Méndez A, Quintero M, Broce A, Oviedo DC, Rangel G, Villarreal AE, Tratner AE, Rodriguez-Araña S, Britton GB (2024). Polypharmacy and associated health outcomes in the PARI-HD study. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, in press.

Villarreal AE, Grajales S, López L, Oviedo DC, Carreira MB, Gómez LA, Montalván A, Vásquez V, Britton GB, Panama Aging Research Initiative (2018). Limitations in activities of daily living among dementia-free older adults in Panama. Ageing International, 43(2), 237-253 DOI: 10.1007/s12126-018-9321-2.

Villarreal AE, Pérez-Lao AR, Oviedo DC, Grajales S, Carreira MB, Britton GB for the Panama Aging Research Initiative (2019). The Panama Aging Research Initiative longitudinal study. MEDICC Review, 21(2-3), 54-58. PMID: 31401637.

Current Projects, Neuroscience Center, PARI-HD:

  1. “Pilot study on the effect of cognitive and physical interventions in elderly adults in Panama”. Entities: USMA, INDICASAT AIP.
  2. “Evaluation of a cognitive and physical intervention program in elderly adults in Panama during 2023 and 2024”. Entities: USMA, INDICASAT AIP.
  3. “Determination of risk factors, neuropsychiatric and cognitive changes in elderly adults recovered from COVID-19”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP, CSS, USMA.
  4. “Psychological implications in the process of mourning for people who lost their loved ones to COVID-19 between March and December 2020”. Entities: USMA, INDICASAT AIP.
  5. “European-Latin American and Caribbean collaborative project on personalized medicine for neurological disorders (ELAPSE-ND).” Entities: INDICASAT AIP, Universidad de Barcelona, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul – Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre, Eberhard Karls University of Tuebingen, Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra, Vall d’hebron Research Institute.
  6. “Evaluation of cognitive impairment in HIV-positive Panamanian adults with the use of cognitive tests and biomarkers”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP, USMA, GORGAS.
  7. “Prevalence of neuropsychiatric findings in SARS-CoV2+ patients who required in-hospital management in the Caja de Seguro Social in the Republic of Panama between June 2020 and June 2021”. Entities: CSS, INDICASAT AIP, USMA.
  8. “Prospective cohort study to evaluate the diagnostic and prognostic value of blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and magnetic resonance imaging biomarkers for mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease in older Panamanian adults”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP, USMA, CSS, UNTHSC, Hospital Paitilla, Hospital Gustavo Nelson Collado.
  9. “Association of pathogen infection and cognitive function in older adults from Panama”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP, USMA.
  10. “Behavioral characterization of the intracerebroventricular streptozotocin model in Sprague Dawley rats of the INDICASAT AIP animal colony”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP.
  11. “Behavioral phenotyping of non-transgenic animal models of Alzheimer’s disease”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP.
  12. “Evaluation of the regulation and function of neuroinflammation in Alzheimer’s disease”. Entities: INDICASATAIP.
  13. “Organic synthesis, molecular modeling and biological activity of novel Naringenin derivatives against alpha-synuclein”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP.
  14. “Study of the biological effect of synthetic molecules that modulate the inflammatory response and amyloid aggregation in Alzheimer’s disease”. Entities: INDICASAT AIP.


Gabrielle Britton, PhD

Highest degree of studies: Ph.D., Indiana University, EE.UU., 2000.

Category: Investigador, Centro de Neurociencias y Unidad de Investigación Clínica.

SNI level: Investigador Distinguido.

Contact information:

Phone:  +507 517 0735+507 517 0708


X: @memoriaysalud

Instagram: @memoriaysalud