Department of Psychology
Medford, MA 02155
Professor of Psychology
Ph.D., Rutgers University, 1974
Robin Kanarek received her B.A. in biology from Antioch College, and
M.S. and Ph.D. in psychology from Rutgers University. Following graduate
school, she was a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Nutrition at
Harvard University, and a research fellow in the Division of
Endocrinology at the University of California, Los Angeles. She came to
Tufts as a research assistant professor, and then climbed the tenure
ladder to become a full professor in the Psychology Department and at
the Friedman School of Nutrition. In 2000, she was named John Wade
Professor. From 2002 until 2006, she served as the Dean of the Graduate
School of Arts and Sciences. Throughout her time at Tufts, Dr. Kanarek
has been actively involved in undergraduate and graduate teaching, and
in 2000 received the Tufts University Senate Professor of the Year
award. When not engaged in teaching and research, Dr. Kanarek enjoys
spending time in the outdoors with her husband and two sons, and
participating as a member of a women's triathlon team.
Dr. Kanarek's primary research interests are in the area of nutrition
and behavior. She has conducted research investigating the effects of
nutritional variables on the development of obesity and diabetes, the
physiological and behavioral factors influencing diet selection in
experimental animals and humans, the role of nutrients in determining
the consequences of psychoactive drugs, and the importance of nutrients
for cognitive behavior in children and adults. Most recently, she has
been studying the effects of obesity and diabetes on cognitive behavior,
and the role of exercise in determining pain sensitivity and the actions
of opioid and other pain relieving drugs. She is an author of more than
100 books, book chapters and articles, and has presented the results of
her research at numerous international and national conferences. Her
research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, as well
as by other governmental agencies and private companies. Dr. Kanarek is
a member of the editorial boards of Physiology and Behavior,
Nutritional Neuroscience, and the Tufts Diet and Nutrition
Newsletter and is past editor-in-chief of Nutrition and Behavior.
Dr. Kanarek has served as a member of the National Academy of Sciences,
Committee on Military Nutrition Research, and on review committees for
the National Institutes of Health, United States Department of
Agriculture, and National Science Foundation.
Dr. Kanarek has always welcomed undergraduates into her laboratory.
Many undergraduates have completed senior honors theses and independent
research projects under her guidance. Based on their excellent work, a
number of these undergraduates have served as co-authors on publications
and presentations at professional meetings. If students are interested
in research, please contact Dr. Kanarek.
- Kanarek, R. B. Dietary modulation of pain sensitivity.
Nutrition in Clinical Care 8: 158-162, 2005.
- Mathes, W. F. and Kanarek, R. B. Chronic running wheel activity
attenuates the antinociceptive actions of morphine and
morphine-6-glucouronide administration into the periaquaductal gray
in rats. Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior 85: 762-768, 2007.
- Coy, R. T. and Kanarek, R. B. Chronic sucrose intake reduces the
antagonist effect of b-funaltrexamine on morphine-induced
antinociception in female but not in male rats. Nutritional
Neuroscience 9: 131-139, 2006.
- Woroby, J., Tepper, B. J. and Kanarek, R. B. Nutrition
and Behavior, A Multidisciplinary Approach, CABI Publishing, 2006.
- Busch, C.R., Taylor, H. A., Kanarek, R. B., & Holcomb, P.J.
Effects of confectionery snacking on cognitive performance. Physiology and
Behavior, 90: 344-352, 2007
- Leibovici, M., Kanarek, R. B.
Diet selection improves morphine's antinociceptive actions in rats with
streptozotocin-induced diabetes. Behav. Neurosci. 121: 965-975, 2007.
- Jurdak, N. Lichtenstein, A.,
Kanarek, R. B. Diet-induced obesity and spatial cognition in young male rats.
Nutri. Neurosci., 11: 1-6, 2008.
- Jurdak, N., Mathes, W. F.,
D'Anci, K., Kanarek, R. B. Chronic sucrose consumption impairs object
recognition in young male rats. In press, Physiol. Behav., 2008.
- D'Anci, K. E. and Kanarek, R. B.
Meals, behavior and brain function. In: Meiselman, H. Meals in Science and
Practice, in press, 2008.
- D'Anci, K. E., Watts, K. L.,
Kanarek, R. B. and Taylor, H. A. Low-carbohydrate weight-loss diets: effects on
cognition and mood. In press, Appetite, 2008.
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