Jennifer Bramen, PhD, is a neuroscientist with expertise in neuroscience research, advanced neuroimaging, and non-pharmacological interventions for cognitive decline. She obtained her PhD in Neuroscience from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where she also completed her postdoctoral research fellowship at the Laboratory of Neuroimaging (LONI).
During her time as an Assistant Research Neuroscientist at the UCLA’s Center for Cognitive Neuroimaging, she made significant contributions to the field. She published groundbreaking work on real-time functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technology aimed at in-scanner neurofeedback to reduce craving levels in smokers. As part of her work with the UCLA Center on Aging, she conducted research focused on the early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease using techniques such as FDG PET and hippocampal unfolding. She was also a lecturer in the Neuroimaging Training Program.
With a passion for bridging the gap between translational research and clinical implementation, Dr. Bramen currently serves as a Senior Research Scientist at the Pacific Neuroscience Institute Foundation, which houses its memory research program within the Pacific Brain Health Center (PBHC), an outpatient dementia care clinic and center of excellence at Pacific Neuroscience Institute. (partnered with the Providence Health system). At PBHC, Dr. Bramen collaborates closely with clinician-scientists to facilitate the integration of research findings into clinical practice. She leads the Neuroimaging Core, which provides neuroimaging-based biomarkers and supports automated data abstraction from the electronic health record to facilitate a better understanding clinical outcomes and measure the efficacy of clinical trials.
Dr. Bramen’s research primarily focuses on interventions for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and related dementias. She is currently engaged in developing neuroimaging-based outcome measures and non-pharmacological interventions to combat cognitive decline. She has made notable contributions to the field as an inventor of AD-NeuroScore, a novel sMRI-based metric that utilizes clinically available measures and a novel (patent pending) algorithm to assess neurodegeneration associated with AD. AD-NeuroScore is distinguished by its clinical feasibility, interpretability, and its potential to improve the patient experience. Notably, it accounts for variations in scans performed at different facilities with different scanners, ensuring the validity of longitudinal follow-up reports.
Dr. Bramen is engaged in intervention research aimed at enhancing the efficacy of multi-modal lifestyle interventions. These interventions employ a combination of coaching and precision-medicine to improve behavior change and simplify treatment approaches. She also collaborates with the Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) on systems biology research to better understand the complex interactions between environment, behavior, genetics, and physiological systems measured using metabolomics and proteomics. The goal of this work is to apply an integrative approach to enhance our understanding of individuals as integrated systems and contribute to the advancement of personalized medicine.