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Sex Differences in Brain, Behavior, Mental Health and Mental Disorders » Agenda

Bethesda, Maryland

Day 1: Monday, February 28

Time Event
1:00 p.m.

Welcome/Introductions by NIMH Director, Thomas Insel, MD

Charge of the workshop by meeting chairs:
Janine Simmons, MD, PhD and Stacia Friedman-Hill, PhD

1:30 p.m.

Theme 1: Cognition

Introduction by Catherine S. Woolley, PhD


  • Elizabeth R. Sowell, PhD: Imaging sex differences in pubertal influences on the developing human brain
  • Adele Diamond, PhD: Possible neural bases of gender differences in higher cognitive functions
  • Adrianna Mendrek, PhD: Sex differences in brain functions associated with cognitive processing in schizophrenia
  • Larry Cahill, PhD: Sex influences on emotional memory: the burden of proof has shifted
  • Tracey J. Shors, PhD: Sex differences in learning: evidence that males and females can engage different brain circuits

Discussion, moderated by Catherine S. Woolley, PhD

5:00 p.m. Day #1 wrap-up

Day 2: Tuesday, March 1

Time Event
8:00 a.m. Welcome/Coffee/Introduction
8:30 a.m.

Theme 2: Affect

Introduction by Jill M. Goldstein, PhD and Stuart Tobet, PhD


  • Daniel Tranel, PhD: Sex-related differences in large-scale neural systems underlying affect and decision-making
  • Mohammed R. Milad, PhD: Influence of estrogen on the neurobiology of fear extinction in female rats and women
  • Tracy L. Bale, PhD: Sex differences in prenatal stress: Impact on offspring neurodevelopment and stress responsivity
  • Debbie Bangasser, PhD: Sex differences in stress response systems: From molecules to mental illness
  • Margaret M. McCarthy, PhD: Keeping the baby with the bath water: What the study of reproduction can teach us about sex differences in mental health

Discussion, moderated by Jill M. Goldstein, PhD and Stuart Tobet, PhD

12:30 p.m.

Theme 3: Social Behavior

Introduction by Arthur P. Arnold, PhD


  • Jay Giedd, MD: Female/male differences in anatomic brain MRI developmental trajectories
  • Cheryl L. Sisk, PhD: Pubertal hormones and the adolescent brain: Further sexual differentiation of brain and behavior
  • Anthony P. Auger, PhD: Epigenetic organization of juvenile behavior: Does sexual differentiation of the brain mediate risk/resilience for atypical social development?
  • Lauren Weiss, PhD: Gene-sex interaction in complex human traits
  • Catherine Dulac, PhD: Sex-specific parent-of-origin allelic expression in the brain

Discussion, moderated by Arthur P. Arnold, PhD

Workshop synthesis and Action Planning

4:00 p.m. Meeting Adjourned