Photo of Henryk F. Urbanski, Ph.D., D.Sc.

Henryk F. Urbanski Ph.D., D.Sc.

  •      (503) 346-5496
    • Professor of Behavioral Neuroscience School of Medicine
    • Professor Oregon National Primate Research Center
    • Director, Biology of Aging Program Oregon National Primate Research Center
    • Co-Director, OHSU Healthy Aging Alliance Oregon National Primate Research Center

Henryk Urbanski, Ph.D., D.Sc. is a professor in the Divisions of Neuroscience and Reproductive & Developmental Sciences at ONPRC and in the Department of Behavioral Neuroscience at OHSU.



Research in Dr. Urbanski's laboratory is focused on two major hypothalamic neural circuits: (1) those responsible for maintaining rhythmic biological functions (e.g., circadian hormone rhythms and the sleep-wake cycle), and (2) those responsible for maintaining normal reproductive function (e.g., puberty, ovulation, and menopause). His primary goal is to elucidate the molecular and cellular mechanisms that underlie these physiological functions, and to understand how they are influenced by various hormones and by changes in the external environment.

Members of Dr. Urbanski's laboratory team are using a variety of techniques to investigate how sleep-wake cycles and reproductive physiology are influenced by factors such as day-length, diet, age and sex-steroids. They are also examining the underlying genetic and neuroendocrine mechanisms.

Dr. Urbanski's hope is that a deeper understanding of plasticity within hypothalamic neuroendocrine circuits will lead to the development of effective therapies for various human physiological disorders, especially those associated with the onset of puberty and menopause, as well as those associated with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).


Areas of interest

  • Brain Aging
  • Circadian rhythms
  • Neuroendocrinology
  • Puberty
  • Menopause


  • B.Sc., University of Wales United Kingdom 1977
  • M.Sc., University of Edinburgh United Kingdom 1978
  • Ph.D., University of Bristol United Kingdom 1983
  • Sc.D., University of Edinburgh United Kingdom 2004
  • Fellowship:

    • Dr. Urbanski's postdoctoral training (1983-1987) was in the Department of Physiology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center


Selected publications

  • Downs JL, Urbanski HF. (2006) Neuroendocrine changes in the aging reproductive axis of female rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta). Biol. Reprod.75:539-546. PMID: 16837643.

  • Lemos DR, Downs JL, Urbanski HF. (2006) Twenty-four hour rhythmic gene expression in the rhesus macaque adrenal gland. Molec. Endocrinol. 20:1164-1176. PMID: 16439464.

  • Urbanski HF (2011). Circadian variation in the physiology and behavior of humans and nonhuman primates. In: Animal Models of Behavioral Analysis, Neuromethods, 50 (ed, J. Raber), Chapter 9, pp.217-235, Humana Press, NY.

  • Sorwell KG, Kohama SG, Urbanski HF. (2012) Preimenopausal regulation of steroidogenesis in the nonhuman primate. Neurobiol. Aging. 33:1487.e1-e13. PMCID: PMC3196783

  • Urbanski HF, Sorwell K. (2012) Age-related changes in neuroendocrine rhythmic function in the rhesus macaque. Age (Dordr). 34:1111-1121. PMCID: PMC3448984.

  • Urbanski HF (2015) Selective targeting of GnRH-II neurons to block ovulation. Contraception 91:423-425. PMCID: PMC4377115.

  • Kohama SG, Renner L, Landauer N, Weiss AR, Urbanski HF, Park B, Voytko ML, Neuringer M (2016). Effect of ovarian hormone therapy on cognition in the aged female rhesus macaque. J. Neurosci. 36:10416-10424. PMCID: PMC5050333.

  • Eghlidi DH, Luna SL, Brown DI, Garyfallou VT, Kohama SG, Urbanski HF. (2018). Gene expression profiling of the SCN in young and old rhesus macaques. J Mol Endocrinol. 61(2):57-67. PMCID: PMC6054827.

  • Graham LC, Naldrett MJ, Kohama SG, Smith C, Lamont DJ, McColl BW, Gillingwater TH, Skehel P, Urbanski HF, Wishart TM (2019). TGFβ1 regulates regional synaptic vulnerability during normal healthy ageing. Cell Reports, 27:1018-1026. PMCID: PMC6486486.


  • "Influence of N-methyl-D-aspartate on the reproductive axis of male Syrian hamsters" Journal of Endocrinology  1993
  • "κMicroarray analysis of relative gene expression stability for selection of internal reference genes in the rhesus macaque brain" BMC Molecular Biology June 21 2010
  • "A biphasic developmental pattern of circulating leptin in the male rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta)" Endocrinology  1998
  • "Integrative models of aging in the nonhuman primate"   2011
  • "Influence of 17β-estradiol and progesterone on GABAergic gene expression in the arcuate nucleus, amygdala and hippocampus of the rhesus macaque" Brain Research January 11 2010
  • "Regional distribution of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD65 and GAD67) mRNA in the hypothalamus of male rhesus macaques before and after puberty" Brain Research June 1 1998
  • "Sexual differentiation of the photoperiodic response in Japanese quail" Journal of Endocrinology  1982
  • "Mitochondrial uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) in the nonhuman primate brain and pituitary" Endocrinology  2000
  • "Effects of short-term treatment with testosterone on the secretion of FSH and LH in castrated golden hamsters exposed to short days" Journal of Reproduction and Fertility  1983
  • "Involvement of transforming growth factor α in the release of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone from the developing female hypothalamus" Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America  1990
  • "Monoclonal antibodies to luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone" Biology of Reproduction  1991
  • "Leptin and puberty" Trends in Endocrinology and Metabolism  2001
  • "Two molecular forms of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH-I and GnRH- II) are expressed by two separate populations of cells in the rhesus macaque hypothalamus" Brain Research  2000
  • "Activation of estradiol-positive feedback at puberty" Neuroendocrinology  1986
  • "Photoperiodic control of seasonal breeding in Syrian hamsters" Neuroendocrinology Letters  1992
  • "Glutamate receptor subunit expression in the rhesus macaque locus coeruleus" Brain Research October 10 2007
  • "Effects of Age and Estradiol on Gene Expression in the Rhesus Macaque Hypothalamus" Neuroendocrinology June 23 2015
  • "Gonadal-independent activation of enhanced afternoon luteinizing hormone release during pubertal development in the female rat" Endocrinology  1987
  • "Effects of moderate calorie restriction on testosterone production and semen characteristics in young rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta)" Biology of Reproduction October 2010
  • "Human testicular peritubular cells secrete pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF), which may be responsible for the avascularity of the seminiferous tubules" Scientific Reports September 3 2015
  • "Lesions in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, but not in the lateral septum, inhibit short-photoperiod-induced testicular regression in Syrian hamsters" Brain Research December 24 1995
  • "Regional expression of mRNA encoding a second form of gonadotropin- releasing hormone in the Macaque brain" Endocrinology  1999
  • "Lesions in the anterior bed nucleus of the stria terminalis in Syrian hamsters block short-photoperiod-induced testicular regression" Biology of Reproduction October 1997
  • "Developmental changes in the hormonal identity of gonadotroph cells in the rhesus monkey pituitary gland" Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism June 1 2003
  • "Causes and consequences of age-related steroid hormone changes" Journal of Neuroendocrinology November 2013
  • "Orexin neuronal changes in the locus coeruleus of the aging rhesus macaque" Neurobiology of Aging August 2007
  • "Photoperiodic modulation of GnRH mRNA in the male Syrian hamster" Brain Research April 18 2001
  • "Perimenopausal regulation of steroidogenesis in the nonhuman primate" Neurobiology of Aging July 2012
  • "GnRH systems of Cichlasoma dimerus (Perciformes, Cichlidae) revisited" Cell and Tissue Research July 2005
  • "Testosterone increases circulating dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate levels in the male rhesus macaque" Frontiers in Endocrinology  2014

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