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Dettmer-Erard, Amanda

Formal Title:



Field Research Coordinator at the Laboratory for Comparative Ethology, focusing on nonhuman primate behavior and physiology across the lifespan in a naturalistic environment.





Elmer School Rd Room 206
Poolesville ,MD 20837


Section on Comparative Behavioral Genetics



Ph.D.        Neuroscience & Behavior, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA                       2009

M.S.          Neuroscience & Behavior, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA                       2007

B.S.           Zoology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA                                                              2001


Developmental consequences of early life experiences, including stress and maternal care; biomarkers of the emergence of socio-cognitive traits; physiological correlates of brain functioning throughout the lifespan


NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH/NICHD, Bethesda, MD                                 Present

UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH, Pittsburgh, PA                                                         2009 – 2012          

NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH/NICHD, Bethesda, MD                                 2007 – 2009

UNIVERSITY OF MASSACHUSETTS, Amherst, MA                                                  2004 – 2007

PITTSBURGH DEVELOPMENT CENTER, Pittsburgh, PA                                        2001 – 2004

INFANT PRIMATE RESEARCH LABORATORY, Seattle, WA                                  1999 – 2001             



NIH Postdoctoral Institutional Research Training Award                                       Present

NIH Individual Postdoctoral NRSA                                                                             2011 – 2012

NIH Institutional Postdoctoral NRSA                                                                          2009 – 2011

NIH Predoctoral Institutional Research Training Award                                         2007 – 2009

NIH Institutional Predoctoral NRSA                                                                            2004 – 2006


University of Pittsburgh Postdoctoral Association (UPPDA) Best Poster Travel Award                 2011

National Postdoctoral Association Travel Fellowship Award                                                              2010

American Society of Primatologists’ Annual Student Award Competition                                        2008

Health Emotions Research Institute Travel Fellowship Award                                                           2006 




Featured Items:

I am particularly interested in the identification of biomarkers for the development of later normal and abnormal processes.  To this end, I am working closely with Drs. Melinda Novak External Web Site Policy and Jerrold Meyer External Web Site Policy the University of Massachusetts at Amherst External Web Site Policy to examine the stress hormone cortisol in hair.  This measurement represents a cumulative measure of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activity over many months, and we have found that it is a reliable predictor of cognitive development as well as anxious behavioral responses to stress in young rhesus monkeys.  Another biomarker for the development of juvenile anxious behavior is physical activity.  Together with Dr. Judy Cameron External Web Site Policy at the University of Pittsburgh External Web Site Policy, I have found that infant and juvenile monkeys that exhibit anxious behaviors during assessments similar to those given to human children to test for anxiety, are also less physically active External Web Site Policy.


Publications (PubMed):

Title Authors Publication Date
Physical activity is linked to ceruloplasmin in the striatum of intact but not MPTP-treated primates.Leak RK,Garbett KA,Dettmer AM,Zhang Z,Mirnics K,Cameron JLCell Tissue Res2012 Dec
The Integrative Biology of Reproductive Functioning in Nonhuman Primates.Dettmer AMAm J Primatol2012 Jul 23
Physiological and behavioral adaptation to relocation stress in differentially reared rhesus monkeys: hair cortisol as a biomarker for anxiety-related responses.Dettmer AM,Novak MA,Suomi SJ,Meyer JSPsychoneuroendocrinology2012 Feb
Effects of shampoo and water washing on hair cortisol concentrations.Hamel AF,Meyer JS,Henchey E,Dettmer AM,Suomi SJ,Novak MAClin Chim Acta2011 Jan 30
Hair cortisol predicts object permanence performance in infant rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta).Dettmer AM,Novak MF,Novak MA,Meyer JS,Suomi SJDev Psychobiol2009 Dec
Surrogate mobility and orientation affect the early neurobehavioral development of infant rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta).Dettmer AM,Ruggiero AM,Novak MA,Meyer JS,Suomi SJDev Psychobiol2008 May
Growth and developmental outcomes of three high-risk infant rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta).Dettmer AM,Houser LA,Ruppenthal GC,Capuano S,Hewitson LAm J Primatol2007 May
Sensitivity to stress-induced reproductive dysfunction is associated with a selective but not a generalized increase in activity of the adrenal axis.Herod SM,Dettmer AM,Novak MA,Meyer JS,Cameron JLAm J Physiol Endocrinol Metab2011 Jan
Last Updated Date: 11/30/2012
Last Reviewed Date: 11/30/2012
Vision National Institutes of Health Home BOND National Institues of Health Home Home Storz Lab: Section on Environmental Gene Regulation Home Machner Lab: Unit on Microbial Pathogenesis Home Division of Intramural Population Health Research Home Bonifacino Lab: Section on Intracellular Protein Trafficking Home Lilly Lab: Section on Gamete Development Home Lippincott-Schwartz Lab: Section on Organelle Biology