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Cynthia A. Munro, M.A., Ph.D.

Cynthia Ann Munro, M.A., Ph.D.

Photo of Dr. Cynthia A. Munro, M.A., Ph.D.
  • Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences


Clinical Psychology, Cognitive Decline in Older Adults, Dementia, Klinefelter's (XXY) Syndrome, Medical Psychology, Neuropsychology, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Psychologist more

Research Interests

Dementia; Sex differences in neuropsychiatric disorders affecting cognition; Functional Imaging; Cognitive effects of stress

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The Johns Hopkins Hospital

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Baltimore, MD 21287 map
Phone: 410-614-7785 | Fax: 410-955-0504

Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center

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Phone: 410-550-6271


Cynthia A. Munro, Ph.D., ABBP(CN), is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. After earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology from The Ohio State University, she earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Kent State University. She completed a two-year post-doctoral fellowship in clinical neuropsychology at the University of Pittsburgh’s Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, and then an NIH-sponsored fellowship titled, “Clinical Research Training in Psychiatry,” also at the University of Pittsburgh. She is board certified by the American Association of Professional Psychology in clinical neuropsychology. She has served on various NIH scientific review committees, and served as a consultant to the DSM-5neurocognitive disorders workgroup. She currently consults to the National Football League Players’ Association’s dementia care benefit plan (Plan 88) and is an editorial board member of International Psychogeriatrics

Dr. Munro conducts neuropsychological examinations through the Johns Hopkins Memory and Alzheimer’s Treatment Center, where she assesses patients with cognitive and other neuropsychiatric disorders. She also has a specialty clinic for patients with Klinefelter (XXY) syndrome. Her overarching research goal is to discover and implement novel approaches to reduce the risk of neuropsychiatric disorders. Among the most well-established risk factors for many disorders is biological sex; accordingly, her work examines sex differences in various brain disorders, with a primary focus on progressive neurodegenerative disorders. She is particularly interested in how stress appears to hasten the onset of cognitive impairment and progression of dementia differentially in women compared to men. Her work thus focuses on factors (genetic, behavioral, personality, etc.) that influence the physiological response to stress. Although stress cannot be avoided, the way that individuals respond to stress is modifiable. Dr. Munro hopes that her work will inform interventions that will delay and even prevent dementia by targeting the way individuals respond to stressful events. more


  • Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
  • Associate Professor of Neurology

Departments / Divisions

Centers & Institutes

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Neurobiological mechanisms underlying sex differences in the clinical manifestation of psychiatric disorders affecting cognition. The influences of sex hormones and the stress response on disorders of addiction and the dementing disorders are particular areas of focus.

Selected Publications


  1. Munro CA, Brandt J, Sheppard J, Steele C, Samus QM, Steinberg M, Rabins, P V , Lyketsos, C G Cognitive response to pharmacological treatment for depression in Alzheimers disease: Secondary outcomes from the Depression in Alzheimers Disease Study (DIADS). American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. 2004; 12: 491-498.
  2. Munro, C.A., Oswald, L., Weerts, E., McCaul, M.E., Wand, G.S. Hormone responses to stress in abstinent alcohol-dependent subjects and social drinkers with no history of alcohol dependence. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. 2005; 29: 1133-1138.
  3. Munro, C.A., McCaul, M.E., Wong, D.F., Oswald, L.M., Zhou, Y., Brasic, J., Kuwabara, H., Kumar, A., Alexander, M., Ye, W., Wand, G.S. Sex differences in striatal dopamine release in healthy adults. Biological Psychiatry. 2006; 59: 966-974.
  4. Munro, C.A., McCaul, M.E., Oswald, L.M., Wong, D.F., Zhou, Y., Brasic, J., Kuwabara, H., Kumar, A., Alexander, M., Ye, W., Wand, G.S. Striatal dopamine release and family history of alcoholism. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. 2006; 30: 1143-1151.
  5. Munro, C.A., Lyketsos, C.G. Cognitive response to sertraline treatment for depression in Alzheimers disease: A possible sex effect. Research and Practice in Alzheimers Disease. 2006; 11: 361-365.
  6. Schretlen, D.J, Nicola G. Cascella, N.G., Meyer, S.M., Kingery, L.R., Testa, S.M., Munro, C.A., Pulver, A.E., Rivkin, P., Rao, V.A., Diaz-Asper, C.M., Dickerson, F.B., Yolken, R.H., Pearlson, G.D. Neuropsychological functioning in bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Biological Psychiatry. 2007; 62: 179-186.
  7. Yang, X., Wang, S., Rice K., Munro C., Wand, G.S. A stress model that increases alcohol preference in a non-alcohol preferring mouse line. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. 2008; 32; 840-852.
  8. Hassan, S.E., Turano, K.A., Munoz, B., Munro, C., Bandeen-Roche, K., West, S.K. Cognitive and vision loss affects the topography of the attentional visual field. Investigations in Ophthalmology and Visual Science, 2008; 49(10): 4672-4678.
  9. Turano, K.A., Munoz, B., Hassan, S.E., Duncan, D.D., Gower, E.W., Bandeen-Roche, K., Keay, L., Munro, C.A., West, S.K. Poor sense of direction is associated with constricted driving space in older drivers. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences. 2009; 64(3): 348-355.
  10. Rao, V., Munro, C.A., Rosenberg, P., Ward, J., Bertrand, M., Degoankar, M., Horsk, A., Pham, D., Yousem, D.M., Barker, P.B. Neuroanatomical correlates of depression in post-traumatic brain injury: Preliminary results of a pilot study. Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience. 2010; 22(2): 231-235.
  11. Bonekamp D, Yassa MA, Munro CA, Geckle RJ, Yousem DM, Barker PB, Schretlen DJ, Brandt J, Horsk A. Gray matter volume in amnestic mild cognitive impairment: Voxel-based morphometry, Neuroreport. 2010; 21(4): 259-263.
  12. Peters ME, Vaidya V, Drye LT, Rosenberg PB, Martin, B K , Porsteinsson, A P , Frangakis, C E , Mintzer, J E , Weintraub, D , Schneider, L S , Rabins, P V , Munro, C A , Meinert, C L , Lyketsos, C G , Avramopoulos, D. Sertraline for the treatment of depression in Alzheimers disease: Genetic influences, Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry and Neurology. 2011; 24: 223-229.
  13. Munro CA, Winicki JM, Schretlen DJ, Gower EW, Turano KA, Muoz B, Keay L, Bandeen-Roche K, West, SK. Sex differences in cognition in healthy elderly individuals. Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition (in press).
  14. Munro CA, Flynn-Longmire C, Drye LT, Martin BK, Frangakis CE, Meinert CL, Mintzer JE, Porsteinsson AP, Rabins PV, Rosenberg PB, Schneider LS, Weintraub D, Lyketsos CG, for the DIADS-2 Research Group. Cognitive outcomes after sertraline treatment in patients with depression of Alzheimers disease. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry (in press).

Activities & Honors


  • American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology
  • International Neuropsychological Society

Videos & Media

Recent News Articles and Media Coverage

Hopkins Brain Wise Newsletter article about Dr. Munro's work

Patient Ratings & Comments

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