Sonya Hughes: 2003-2007

Sonya Hughes

Sonya Hughes
Public Health Apprentice for the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Dallas, TX


I was a Pre-Med/African-American studies major at UT-Austin. On the UT campus I was involved in Black Health Professions, Longhorn Scholars and Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society.

I came to Dr. Gore’s lab in 2003, when she had first moved to Austin and was setting up her lab. I was the first work-study student that she hired, and I stayed in her lab until my graduation in 2007. For the summer 2004 I received an Endocrine Society fellowship, which provided me a stipend and allowed me to perform research full time. I began my research projects by investigating the circadian (24 hour day/night cycle) regulation of the timing of puberty, taking a pharmacological approach. I also developed an interest in how puberty is regulated in humans, and wrote a paper with Dr. Gore on this subject.

Currently, I am working for the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Dallas, and attending UNTHSC in the Masters in Public Health program.


  • Hughes SM, Gore AC (2007) How the brain controls puberty, and implications for sex and ethnic differences. Family and Community Health 30: S112-S114.

Published Abstracts:

  • Gore AC, Feduccia A, Choudhury L, Yin W, Steinberg RM, Maffucci JA, Hughes S (2004) Blockade of the nocturnal increase in GnRH release delays the onset of puberty in female rats. Endocrine Society Abst.
  • Hillsman KD, Hughes SM, Maffucci JA, Gore AC (2004) Circadian regulation of the timing of puberty in rats. Society for Neuroscience Abst.
  • Hughes SM, Yin W, Gore AC (2006) The GnRH antagonist acyline delays puberty and suppresses the reproductive axis of male but not female rats. Endocrine Society Abst, Boston, MA.


  • University of Texas, Undergraduate Research Fellowship, 2006
  • University of Texas System Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) Program, 2005
  • Endocrine Society Summer Research Fellowship, 2004