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Student Spotlight

Candice Dunn picture

Class of 2017

Hometown: Sicklerville, New Jersey

Current Research: I am working in the Bryan Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center with Dr. Kathleen Welsh-Bohmer to identify neuropsychological changes associated with pathological signs of early preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) using both antemortem clinical data and postmortem data detailing brain pathology. We are analyzing the relationship between AD risk genotypes and neuropsychological changes to understand expression in healthy populations.

My thoughts on neuroscience education: I truly appreciate the neuroscience major at Duke because it has helped me to combine my large range of interests. This major has allowed me to study topics from one spectrum to another, including how we make economical decisions to how our auditory system perceives music, all the way to the long-term effects of head trauma in professional athletes. I’m thankful for this major to give me such a broad foundation that will send me into life after college with both the science and confidence to learn anything.

What jump-starts my brain: Neurodegenerative diseases drive my passion and perception of neuroscience. There are so many incurable diseases out there today that we are seeking to learn the answers to in order to change their permanence and that is why I love this field of science. Of late, the research on Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy has grasped my interest as up-and-coming research attempts to explain the long-term consequences of recurrent head injuries in professional athletes.