Elon student presents research at SYNAPSE 2007

On March 31, Andrea Spaeth (senior psychology major and Honors Fellow) will be giving a presentation at SYNAPSE (Symposium for Young Neuroscientists and Professors of the Southeast) 2007, which will be held at Davidson College. Titled “Relationships Between Serum Total Cholesterol Levels and Cognitive Function”, Spaeth’s presentation will discuss some of the findings from her Honors thesis research. After statistically controlling for a number of potentially related factors (such as age, education, income, life stress, gender, medication use, dieting status, and overall physical health) Spaeth has demonstrated that elevated total cholesterol levels are associated with significant decreases in planning ability and lapses in sustained attention. These results are clinically important, as they suggest that elevated cholesterol levels may negatively affect psychological function in addition to cardiovascular health. This work was co-authored by Sarah Dollard (senior psychology major), Cindy Novak (Elon University Wellness Coordinator), and Dr. Mathew Gendle (assistant professor, department of psychology).