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Research at Mass General
Jordan Smoller, MD, ScD, is a Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and a Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston. He is the associate chief for research for the Mass General Department of Psychiatry and director of psychiatric genetics. He is director of the Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Genetics Unit in Mass General's Center for Human Genetics Research. Dr. Smoller also serves as co-director of the Genetics and Genomics Unit of the Mass General Clinical Research Program, is an Associate Member of the Broad Institute and a Senior Scientist at the Broad’s Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research.
Dr. Smoller earned his undergraduate degree at Harvard University and his medical degree at Harvard Medical School. After completing residency training in psychiatry at McLean Hospital, Dr. Smoller received masters and doctoral degrees in epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health. He also completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Training Program in Psychiatric Genetics.
The focus of Dr. Smoller’s research interests has been the identification of genetic determinants of childhood and adult psychiatric disorders. Dr. Smoller and colleagues have also been studying genetic predictors of treatment response and the ways in which advances in genetics may impact clinical practice in psychiatry. He is an author of more than 200 scientific articles, book chapters and reviews; the recipient of numerous research awards; and a principal investigator on NIH-funded studies of the genetics of anxiety and the genetics of bipolar disorder, major depression and schizophrenia as well as brain imaging phenotypes.
See Dr. Smoller's publications
Assistant to Dr. Smoller:
Kristin JoyceSimches Research Building 185 Cambridge Street, CPZN-6Boston, MA 02114
Phone: 617-724-9076; Fax: 617-726-0830Email: email@example.com
Chia-Yen Chen, ScD, is a postdoctoral research fellow at both the PNGU and the Analytic and Translational Genetics Unit (ATGU) at Mass General. Dr. Chen is also affiliated with the Broad institute and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
Karmel Choi, PhD, is mentored by Jordan Smoller, MD, ScD, and Karestan Koenen, PhD, through the T32 Training Program in Psychiatric Genetics at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Dr. Choi's research focuses on the interplay of genetic and environmental factors that influence trauma and resilience across the life course, leveraging methods from statistical genomics, network science and developmental epidemiology. Her clinical work focuses on treatment of mood and anxiety disorders and stress-related health conditions, particularly among women. Dr. Choi earned her PhD in clinical psychology at Duke University with Kathleen Sikkema, PhD, where her research characterized the impact of childhood trauma on mental health and health behavior during the perinatal period. She completed her clinical internship in behavioral medicine at Mass General. She is also affiliated with the Broad Institute.
Anne works with Dr. Smoller at PNGU and Ben Neale, PhD, at ATGU. She graduated from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health with a doctoral degree in genetic epidemiology. Her thesis focused on developing and applying statistical methods to a range of human -omics data, including GWAS, epigenomics, and metabolomics. She’s excited to explore the genetic underpinnings of and across neuropsychiatric traits, including projects to identify genetic variation affecting the risk of common epilepsies and to investigate cross-disorder relationships.
Robbie Mealer is a third year resident in the Mass General/McLean Adult Psychiatry Residency Program and will be starting the Stanley Center Psychiatric Genetics and Neuroscience Fellowship in 2017 under the mentorship of Dr. Smoller. He received his MD and PhD degrees from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, working in the lab of Solomon H. Snyder, MD. He received his undergraduate degree from Montana State University while performing basic neuroscience research with Thomas E. Hughes, PhD.
Randi Schuster is a neuropsychologist with specialized expertise in the cognitive ramifications of early drug exposure. She is currently funded by a five-year NIH NIDA career development award, mentored by Dr. Evins in the Center for Addiction Medicine and Dr. Smoller in the Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Genetics Unit.
Amanda Zheutlin, PhD is a postdoctoral research fellow advised by Dr. Smoller at PNGU. She received her PhD from Yale University where she worked with Tyrone Cannon, PhD, investigating how genes influence neurodevelopment and cognition in psychosis. At PNGU she is interested in continuing that line of work, as well as developing risk prediction algorithms for psychiatric disorders.
Yen-Feng Lin is a doctoral candidate in epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health. He is also a board-certified psychiatrist in Taiwan. Yen-Feng’s research interest is focused on population genetics and genetic epidemiology of psychiatric disorders. He is working with Dr. Smoller studying the genetic overlaps between personality traits and cardiovascular disease (CVD) and the impact of personality traits on the association between genetics and CVD.
Yen-Feng received his MD degree from National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan. He received an MS in epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health, and his MHS in mental health from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health.
Meg Wang, MSc, is a doctoral student in Epidemiology at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. She graduated with a BA in the biological basis of behavior from the University of Pennsylvania and MSc in epidemiology from Imperial College, London. Her research interests include understanding the genetic underpinnings of depressive disorders and using genetic methods to elucidate the etiology of depression.
Qiu-Yue Zhong is a doctoral candidate in epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Qiu-Yue’s research interest is focused on maternal mental health. She is working with Dr. Smoller developing a phenotypic algorithm to identify pregnant women with suicidal behaviors using natural language processing.
Mei-Hua Hall, PhDMert Sabuncu, PhDAvram Holmes, PhDJustin Baker, MDTamar Katz, MD, PhD
Founding DirectorDavid Pauls
Visiting InvestigatorsCarolina BlayaSoraya Seedat
Post-docsJennifer BarnettShaunna BerkovitchSarah BergenJennifer DiNieriLaramie DuncanErin DunnLaura GermineJie HuangPhil Hyoun LeeLauren McGrathAlisha PollastriShaun PurcellNadia SolovieffMargaret WeyAnna WisteLo-Hua Yuan
Program ManagersHolly SciortinoAlison Hoffnagle
Project ManagersFelecia CerratoStephen HaddadPatience GallagherFrancine MolayPriya MoorjaniBeth Rosen-SheidleyCatherine Shain
Office/Grants ManagersTalia GoldsmithJennifer PintoKatie SklarskyJamie WellerSamantha SchwartzErin Anderson
Graduate StudentsJessica Agnew-BlaisJian Kong
Laboratory ManagersJes FagernessBrian Galloway
Laboratory TechniciansSarah AndrusNatalie BalkemaAditi BasuJonathan ChaponisJacqueline CraneDaisy DaiAmanda GalenkampAllan GuineyBoyd GunnellJohn KennedyCatherine MayerfeldMiles NugentGerri TangrenJenna TarasoffSarah WeatherallAaron WolfLesley Yamaki
Research CoordinatorsStefanie BlockMaria BulzacchelliBridget ChakCaitlin ClementsYael DaiErica Gardner-SchusterConnie GuilleTamar KaimStephanie RacetteLisa SussweinLisa WatrasSydney WeillCandace WhiteMirella Young
Lab InternsNoura Al-JuffaliShannon BeanKatherine BeattieJennifer BourneSofia Chua-RubenfeldCatherine DemersTomer FinkelbergJohn HofferBrendan LangSam LevinLydia LewisSony MysoreCameron PeeblesSara RubensteinLiz RubinJared SoundyZeke Vainer
Undergraduate Thesis AdviseeMalorie Snider
Ruthann Hewett graduated from Brandeis University in 2016 with a BA in psychology and health, science, society & policy. Her honors thesis examined mental illness and physical disability through the lens of the Stereotype Content Model. In the Smoller Lab, she is involved in studies that examine the genomic bases of disorders such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia and develops innovative ways to use EHRs to predict suicide. Following her work in the Smoller Lab, Ruthann plans to pursue a PhD in clinical psychology with a focus on transcultural psychology and medical anthropology.
Kristin Joyce is the assistant to Dr. Jordan Smoller. Kristin has held this position for over five years and has become an integral part of the PNGU team.
Ashley Seiger brings over eight years of research experience to the Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Genetics Unit. Ashley received her BS in psychology and biology from Sacred Heart University and recently completed her masters in research administration from Emmanuel College.
Tiffany Stanton graduated from Boston College with a BA in Mathematics and a minor in General Education. She currently spends half of her time at PNGU and the other half at the Partners Healthcare Biobank, recruiting patients for the data repository. Following her position at Mass General, she hopes to obtain a masters degree in public health and continue to work in the healthcare industry.
Vered Levy, PhDJeffrey TosteAlexander Zaitsev, MS
Visit the Core Lab page to learn more.
The major goals of this project are to collect a large cohort of bipolar disorder cases and unaffected controls and construct a harmonized data source for genome-wide studies. The cohort will combind phenotypic data from the U.S. case-control sample with a parallel, separately funded European case-control sample.
PIs: Bruce Cohen and Dost Ongur The goal of this study is to examine genetic variants associated with psychotic disorders in a large cohort of patients with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder and bipolar disorder.
PI: Mark PollackThe major goals of this project are to compare the acute efficacy of d-cycloserine (DCS) augmentation relative to placebo augmentation of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for the treatment of patients with panic disorder, examine the longer-term effects of DCS and to examine whether genetic loci strongly implicated in the neurobiology of fear conditioning and extinction are associated with extinction learning in response to CBT alone or CBT/DCS treatment.
Contact the Smoller Lab to learn more about our research.
See a complete list of Dr. Smoller's publications on PubMed.
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