Rebecca Haberman

Associate Professor of Biology
Rebecca Haberman

BS, Duke University

PhD, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Rebecca Parsons Haberman earned her BS in Psychology from Duke University and a PhD in Neurobiology from University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Her research during these years spanned a variety of topics from development of the olfactory system, to gene expression regulation in sea urchin embryos, to the use of viruses to mitigate seizure activity in epilepsy disorders. After obtaining her PhD, Dr Haberman spent 18 years as research faculty at Johns Hopkins University, investigating brain aging and Alzheimer’s disease in rodent models with Dr Michela Gallagher. This research identified age-dependent brain mechanisms that increase an individual’s vulnerability to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. This research also examined brain mechanisms of resilience, or the ability to stave off memory loss and neurodegenerative processes at older ages. Based on this work, a potential Alzheimer’s Disease preventative therapy is currently in clinical trial ( Her current research interests extend from this work, investigating the changing role of specific sets of vulnerable neurons throughout the lifespan. By characterizing the aging of neurons that are initially targeted by neurodegenerative pathology, she hopes to identify life events or conditions that lead to resilient phenotypes. 

In 2020, Dr Haberman made a career change to teaching, a lifelong dream, and joined the biology faculty at Mary Baldwin University. With this move, Dr Haberman hopes to make a positive impact on students, sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm for all things scientific. Here she will continue research on memory and aging hoping to engage and inspire the next generation of scientists.