Dr. Bart Rypma was recently awarded the Major Extramural Grant Award (MEGA) for Development of Calibrated fMRI at the UT Dallas Center for BrainHealth Imaging Center. Dr. Rypma’s research is aimed at exploring the cognitive and neurobiological mechanisms of human memory and how those mechanisms are affected by aging and disease. Dr. Rypma is a professor in the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences at The University of Texas at Dallas and The UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas School of Psychiatry.
Describe your research for a lay audience.
We’re studying the mental processes involved in working memory and how those processes change with aging.
What led you to pursue this project?
What led me to pursue this project was the basic realization that I came to, in the process of studying Alzheimer’s disease, that we didn’t really understand a lot about basic brain function and how it changes with healthy aging. My belief has been that healthy aging could help us understand brain impairments as they develop in Alzheimer’s disease.
What is your favorite aspect of research?
My favorite aspect of research really is the colleagues that I work with; the graduate students, and the post-docs and really getting new ideas from them and getting to pursue that work and apply my own expertise towards developing them as young scientists.
What suggestions do you have for those looking to get into research?
My advice to people who are looking to get into research is find someone who’s active and willing to mentor young people. There are a lot of active scientists out there but there’s a small subset of them that are really willing to work with young students and develop their talent.