University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Daria Kotov



Methodology Workshop Scholarship

School or College: 

College of Natural Sciences


Randy Corpuz


Daria Kotov is a PhD student in Developmental and Brain Sciences in the department of Psychology at UMB. Under the mentorship of her advisor, Randy Corpuz, her research broadly focuses on the underlying mechanisms of post-partum depression in first time parents. Her dissertation will examine the ways in which genetic and epigenetic factors correlate with depression scores and how Life History Theory can be used explain her findings.


Post-partum depression (also known as PPD), it is a mood disorder that many women experience after birth. Roughly 1 in 8 women experience symptoms of PPD but it can be as high as 1 in 5 women as reported by the CDC. PPD can have detrimental effects on both mother and infant health making it a crucial interest in the study of development and PPD has also been found to have underlying biological risk factors. Relationship analysis of PPD in general and in relation to the 5-HTTLPR SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphism) has been almost exclusively with women where much less is known about the allelic relationship with paternal post-partum depression. 

The goal of this research is to expand on the biochemical mechanisms of post-partum depression to better understand it’s clinical manifestation and perhaps alternative ways for treatment.  

Student Award Academic Year: