Cross-disciplinary collaboration and training are essential components of neuroimaging research within the MGH Department of Psychiatry.
Training and Co-Mentorship
Cross-disciplinary collaboration and training are essential components of neuroimaging research within the MGH Department of Psychiatry. The field merges clinical, basic neuroscience and genetics, engineering, and psychology. A successful model that created a joint-mentorship team for emerging scientists was adopted under the leadership of Dr. Scott Rauch. The team consisted of a senior member of the neuroimaging program, a senior clinician-scientist targeting a specific disorder (e.g., Dr. Donald Goff targeting schizophrenia, and Dr. Roger Pitman targeting PTSD), and a senior scientist with deep expertise in an approach to human clinical neuroscience (e.g., Dr. Bruce Rosen of the Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, and Dr. Verne Caviness of the Center for Morphometric Analysis). This remarkably successful framework anticipated the NIH Roadmap initiatives that emphasize interdisciplinary training.
The program has successfully trained over 20 scientists via NIH K-awards and many additional post-doctoral fellows and research-track residents. Presently over 30 post-doctoral fellows and residents are training with program faculty conducting psychiatric neuroimaging research. Many former trainees have become leaders of the field. For example, Dr. Cary Savage directs the functional neuroimaging programs at the University of Kansas; Dr. Stephan Heckers is the current Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University; and Dr. Darin Dougherty directs the Psychiatric Neurotherapeutics Program at Harvard.
Augmenting this infrastructure, Drs. Bruce Rosen, Randy Buckner, and John Gabrieli, who is Professor of Health Sciences and Technology at MIT, received a training grant as part of the Blueprint for Neuroscience Research initiative. The overall goal of the program is to train a new generation of researchers who are fluent in the principles and technologies of neuroimaging, who understand their application to experimental questions in neuroscience, and who are comfortable working across disciplines and institutions. A large number of the fellows and clinical scientists enrolled in the program have been working with faculty who are affiliated with psychiatric neuroimaging research.