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Psychologist, Educator, Researcher
Do you know what will really keep you living and thinking clearly for a long time? Dr. Wenk does. His research explores the intersection of food and drugs and will challenge your biases on what makes a long life. His talk will explore why what we eat, and how much we eat, is the single most important daily decision we make that impacts how we age and how long we live.
Gary L. Wenk, a Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience & Molecular Virology, Immunology and Medical Genetics at the Ohio State University and Medical Center, is a leading authority on the consequences of chronic brain inflammation and animal models of Alzheimer’s disease. He is also a member of the OSU Center for Brain and Spinal Cord Repair. He received a B.A. degree in psychology and biology from Albion College and a Ph.D. in Neurotoxicology from the University of Cincinnati. He then trained as a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of Drs. Peter Davies and Robert Terry at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He joined the faculty of the Departments of Psychology and Pathology at the Johns Hopkins University for nine years and served as a Program Director for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory & Biological Basis of Behavior Program, Division of Behavioral and Neural Sciences, at the National Science Foundation. He joined the faculty of the University of Arizona and was a research scientist in the Division of Neural Systems, Memory & Aging for 15 years. Dr. Wenk is the recipient of the Vernon & Virginia Furrow Excellence in Teaching Award, The Five Star Faculty Teaching Award, The Distinguished Teaching Award from Ohio State University, The Joan N Huber Award for Outstanding Scholarship and The Harlan Hatcher Arts and Sciences Distinguished Faculty Award. Professor Wenk’s research is focused upon the investigation of drugs that can slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and rescue the brain from the consequences of normal and pathological aging. He has been interviewed about his work by many magazines and radio stations, including NPR, WBZ, WJR, CBS News, & WABC, numerous local and national television programs, including CNN and The Dr Oz show; he was interviewed by Lucasfilm, Ltd. and Amanada Productions for a 2-hr TV documentary on the topic of cognitive enhancers. Professor Wenk was elected in 2008 to the rank of Fellow at the American Assosciation for the Advancement of Science for distinguished contributions in the field of neuropharmacology, neurodegenerative diseases and neuroinflammatory processes. This rank was first given in 1874 to members of AAAS whose “efforts on behalf of the advancement of science or its applications are scientifically or socially distinguished.”
‘Drugs are foods are chemicals are drugs.’ Dr. Wenk takes us inside the ‘Brain Cafe.’ He equates food with drugs and urges us to eat protective foods and eat less.