M1 Samantha Williams in Abbott Lab receives Shapiro Summer Research grant

Congratulations to Samantha Williams, M1 student in the UW School of Medicine and Public Health, who received a 2023 Shapiro Summer Research Program Award! Samantha was previously an undergraduate student in the lab of Professor David Abbott, PhD, and will be co-mentored by Abbott alongside Dan Ulrich, PhD, professor in the UW SMPH Department of Neuroscience.

Samantha’s project will be working to show that knockdown of estrogen receptor alpha expression in the mediobasal hypothalamus of prepubertal female rhesus monkeys accelerates the neuroendocrine onset of puberty and thus menarche and first ovulation. This is all in collaboration with Dr. Jon Levine, Dept of Neuroscience and Director of the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center. This would open the door for future brain-only mild estrogenic treatment (potential therapeutic already in monkey trials) to prevent precocious puberty or brain only estrogen antagonism to overcome substantial puberty delay.

Congratulations, Samantha and mentors!