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Samuel Wilkinson, MD, and Rachel Katz, MD, are the first Chief Residents of the Yale Interventional Psychiatry Service at Yale New Haven Psychiatric Hospital. The new training opportunity is exposing more residents to therapy that offers hope to treatment-resistant patients who do not respond to traditional psychotherapies and medication. The Yale Department of Psychiatry has been at the forefront of studies into the use of brain stimulation therapy to treat disorders like depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disease. Read more 

Study examines effects of cigarette smoking on food cravings, depressive symptoms, and stress

Research by Marney White, PhD, left, Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Psychiatry; Carlos Grilo, PhD, center, Professor of Psychiatry and of Psychology; and Rajita Sinha, PhD, right, Foundations Fund Professor of Psychiatry, concluded cigarette smokers had higher cravings for high-fat and fast-food fats than non-smokers. The study was published in the journal Eating Behaviors. Read more 

Yale study: Pain can be felt before a medical condition sets in

Patients and providers often view interference in functioning due to pain as something that follows a disease or injury. However, based on their prior findings that pain interference was positively associated with incident (or new onset) substance use, mood, and anxiety disorders, Yale researchers, including Declan Barry, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, wondered whether pain interference might also presage incident general medical conditions. The study was published in the journal Pain Medicine. Read more 

Missing the point: Self-inflicted traumatic brain injury in psychosis

Phelan Maruca-Sullivan, MD, a fourth-year resident in the Yale Department of Psychiatry, was the first author of a case report published in BMJ Case Reports about a man whose self-inflicted traumatic brain injury went undiscovered in the emergency room. "This case highlights the difficulty inherent in evaluating and treating the medical symptoms of certain psychiatric patients. Physicians ... face considerable challenges in determining the reliability of information obtained from psychiatric patients," the authors wrote. Read more 

Picciotto to become President of Society for Research on Nicotine & Tobacco

Marina Picciotto, PhD, Charles B.G. Murphy Professor of Psychiatry and Professor in the Child Study Center, and Deputy Chair for Basic Science Research in the Yale Department of Psychiatry, will become President of the Society for Research on Nicotine & Tobacco in the Spring. As President, she will make sure that basic neuroscience and molecular studies are well represented in the priorities of the Society, and that the organization involves more trainees and young scientists.. Read more  

Morgan new Chair of Psychiatry at Lawrence + Memorial Hospital

Peter Morgan, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, has been named Chair of Psychiatry at Lawrence + Memorial Hospital in New London. L + M is now owned by Yale New Haven Health Services Corporation. In addition to his administrative duties, Morgan will provide clinical care to patients. He will look to increase staffing in the department to add services, including for patients suffering drug and alcohol addiction, and has already opened more beds to patients. Read more  

Three faculty named to ACNP membership

Rajita Sinha, PhD, left, Foundations Fund Professor of Psychiatry; Chiang-shan Ray Li, MD, PhD, center, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience; and Thomas Fernandez, MD, right, Assistant Professor in the Child Study Center and of Psychiatry, have been appointed members of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP). Read more  

American College of Psychiatrists to honor residency teaching collaborative co-chaired by Ross

The National Neuroscience Curriculum Initiative (NNCI), co-chaired by David Ross, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Associate Director of the Yale Psychiatry Residency Program, will be recognized in February by The American College of Psychiatrists. NNCI will receive the Award for Creativity in Psychiatric Education. NNCI is a collaboration between educators and neuroscientists to create shared resources for effectively teaching neuroscience to psychiatry trainees and to provide faculty training. Read more 

Johnson, Lane selected for Geriatric Mental Health Foundation Honors Scholar Program

Kevin Johnson, MD, left, and Chadrick Lane, MD, right, third-year residents in the Yale Department of Psychiatry, have been chosen for the 2017 Geriatric Mental Health Foundation Honors Scholar Program. The program was developed to expose medical students and young physicians to the field of geriatric psychiatry.

Read about Johnson 

Read about Lane 

Fried, Iheanacho, Ross honored with APA teaching awards

Three Yale Department of Psychiatry faculty have been honored with teaching awards from the American Psychiatric Association. Deborah Fried, MD, left, and Theddeus Iheanacho, MD, center, were awarded the Irma Bland Certificate of Excellence in Teaching Residents, and David Ross, MD, PhD, right, received the Nancy C.A. Roeske Certificate of Recognition for Excellence in Medical Student Education. Read more 

Two PRCH affiliates receive City of New Haven Pinnacle Awards

Annie Harper and Billy Bromage with the Yale Program for Recovery and Community Health (PRCH) received Pinnacle Awards from the City of New Haven at a ceremony December 8 at City Hall. The Pinnacle Awards recognize people who have made major contributions to the New Haven community. Harper is the Financial Health project leader at the Connecticut Mental Health Center, and has lived in New Haven for 15 years. Bromage works at PRCH and CMHC, and is also a lecturer in the Yale Department of Psychiatry. Read more 

Foster receives YCCI Scholar Award to examine cannabis use behaviors in young adults

Dawn Foster, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, has received a Yale Center for Clinical Investigation (YCCI) Scholar Award to examine cannabis use behaviors in young adults. Foster described her project as a "novel examination of cannabis vaping -- an understudied, rapidly growing form of substance abuse -- designed to identify high-risk individuals, patterns of use, and contexts associated with cannabis vaping." The award is for a 24-month term. Read more 

13 Yale Department of Psychiatry residents match into fellowships

Thirteen Yale Department of Psychiatry residents have matched into fellowships to continue their medical training. They are: Stephanie Ng, MD; Leisel Martin-Brown, MD; Yasmeen Abdul-Karim, MD; Ish Bhalla, MD; Karsten Heil, MD; Stephanie Yarnell, MD, PhD; Phelan Maruca-Sullivan, MD; Rachel Katz, MD; Youngsun Cho, MD, PhD; Emeric Bojarski, MD; Francesco Peluso, MD; Rachel Wurmser, MD; and Paola Ayora, MD. Read more 

Krishnan-Sarin: Youths, e-cigarettes a bad combination

The smoking of electronic cigarettes has become rampant among adolescents in the United States, and Suchitra Krishnan-Sarin, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry, wrote in The Hartford Courant that more effort must be made to warn users young and old of the known and unknown health risks. "Never in my career as a scientist have I seen such a rapid and widespread increase in use by youths of something containing an addictive substance," she wrote. Read more 

Williams: A case for the religious history

J. Corey Williams, MD, a second-year resident in the Yale Department of Psychiatry, wrote in The Lancet Psychiatry that asking patients spiritually oriented questions during clinical interviews could provide insight into a patient's health. "During clinical interviews, asking questions such as, 'How does your religious faith help you make sense of your illness?' ... may hold promise of bearing fruitful insight into the patient's illness experience," Williams wrote. Read more 

Budde: Strung out at 4 am: Emergency room doctors treating heroin overdoses

Approximately 2 million Americans have an opioid addiction, and obtaining treatment without insurance can be daunting. Kristin Budde, MD, a third-year resident in the Yale Department of Psychiatry, wrote in The Hartford Courant about an early morning experience she had in the hospital emergency room with a 25-year-old homeless heroin addict who sought treatment for withdrawal. "He needs to live somewhere," Budde wrote. "If he doesn't get sober he has a 50-50 shot of making it to 50." Read more 

Barron: Should we let doctors-in-training be more sleep-deprived?

Daniel Barron, MD, PhD, a first-year resident in the Yale Department of Psychiatry, wrote in Scientific American about changes in graduate medical education guidelines that would allow medical training programs to schedule their interns for shifts as long as 28 consecutive hours, instead of the current 16. "If trainees are being prepped to work 28 hours straight, what does this say about the medical community's understanding of sleep physiology?" he wrote. Read more 

Yonkers comments on study about pregnancy's impact on brain

Kimberly Yonkers, MD, Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Center for Wellbeing of Women and Mothers, spoke to CNN about a study published in Nature Neuroscience that examined the impact of pregnancy on a woman's brain. The study revealed that pregnancy changes the size and structure of brain regions involved in understanding the thoughts, feelings, and beliefs and intentions of others. Yonkers told CNN that changes in some areas of the brain may help women forget the pain or difficulty of pregnancy. Read more  

CMHC video series: 'Recovery is ... Going Back to School'

The last video in the year-long recovery video series at the Connecticut Mental Health Center is "Recovery is ... Going Back to School." In this video, Serena explains how returning to school has assisted her in the recovery process. The video series was launched by the CMHC Foundation to mark the 50th anniversary of CMHC in 2016. The videos were produced by Lucile Bruce, CMHC's communications officer. Watch the video 

Susumu Tonegawa, PhD, presents annual Flynn Lecture

The Yale Department of Psychiatry hosted Nobel Prize laureate Susumu Tonegawa, PhD, center, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for the annual Grand Rounds Flynn Lecture on January 20. The title of Dr. Tonegawa's talk was, "Monitoring and Engineering Memory Engram Cells and their Circuits." Flanking Tonegawa are John H. Krystal, MD, left, Robert L. McNeil, Jr. Professor of Neuroscience and Chair of the Yale Department of Psychiatry, and George Dragoi, MD, PhD, right, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and of Neuroscience at Yale. Dragoi completed his postdoctoral studies at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT in Dr. Tonegawa's laboratory. Watch a video of Dr. Tonegawa's presentation 

Residents, Program Directors perform Day of Service in New Haven

Thirteen volunteers from the Yale Department of Psychiatry participated in a Day of Service on January 21 at Amistad Catholic Worker on Rosette Street in New Haven. The contingent included faculty, residents, and children. The volunteers organized donations and cleared a room so it could be used as a bedroom for a new tenant. The children helped out by planting vegetable seedlings. Amanda Sun, MD, a second-year resident who organized the volunteer effort, said the group spent time learning about Amistad and its mission to provide shelter to people in need. Sun said the department will maintain its relationship with Amistad, and will try to assist with other events, including Easter-related activities, an annual block party, maintenance of a community garden, and serving meals.

Yale Psychiatry Band entertains at holiday party

The Yale Department of Psychiatry Band headlined the entertainment at the 2016 Departmental Holiday Party on December 17 at The Graduate Club in New Haven. The party was attended by approximately 150 psychiatry residents, fellows, and faculty who enjoyed music by their colleagues. Members of the band include Frank Fortunati, MD, JD; Michael Pantalon, PhD; Rachel Katz, MD; John Cahill, MBBS; and David Sasso, MD.

Alumni Spotlight

Alpert named Chair of Psychiatry at Montefiore and Albert Einstein

Jonathan E. Alpert, MD '86, PhD, has been named Professor and University Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Montefiore Health System and Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. He will succeed T. Byram Karasu, MD, who completed his residency training at Yale. Alpert received his MD from Yale School of Medicine. He is currently Associate Chief of Psychiatry and Director of the Depression Clinical and Research Program at the Massachusetts General Hospital. Read more 

Abi-Saab appointed Chief Medical Officer at Galapagos

Walib Abi-Saab, MD, who completed his psychiatry residency and was an Assistant Professor in the Yale Department of Psychiatry from 1998-2001, has been appointed Chief Medical Officer at the biotechnology company Galapagos NV, headquartered in Belgium. He previously worked at Shire Pharmaceuticals, where he held various clinical development leadership roles. Prior to that he led clinical development activities at Novartis, Abbott Laboratories, and Pfizer. His appointment at Galapagos becomes effective March 1. Read more 

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Department seeks proposals for annual Detre Awards

The Yale Department of Psychiatry is soliciting applications from trainees in its Psychiatry Residency Program for the 2017-18 Thomas P. Detre Fellowship Awards in Translational Neuroscience Research in Psychiatry. The awards will support the translational research endeavors of residents currently enrolled (or residents interested in enrolling) in the Neuroscience Research Training Program in Psychiatry. As many as three awards of up to $30,000 per award will be funded. Read more 

Special Events

Shulman Lectures to explore the science and history of cognition across species

A look inside "Other Minds" is the theme of the 2017 Shulman Lecture in Science and Humanities presented by the Whitney Humanities Center. The opening lecture, "What is it like to be a Dog?" will be given on February 15 by Alexandra Horowitz, New York Times best-selling author and Associate Professor at Barnard College. The lectures continue through the end of April, and are free and open to the public. The series is organized in conjunction with a Yale College seminar, and is presented under the auspices of the Franke Program in Science and the Humanities. Read more 

Psychiatry Grand Rounds

Friday, January 27, 2017; 10:15-11:30 am

Double Trouble: Treating PTSD and Substance Use Disorder

Sonya Norman, PhD, Director, National Center for PTSD; Associate Professor, University of California San Diego School of Medicine

CMHC Auditorium, 34 Park St.

Details / Download to your calendar 

Friday, February 3, 2017; 10:15-11:30 am

Mental Health Care Responses to the Nepal Earthquakes: From Humanitarian Emergencies to Sustainable Mental Health Systems

Brandon Kohrt, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor, Psychiatry, Global Health, and Anthropology, Duke University

CMHC Auditorium, 34 Park St.

Details / Download to your calendar 

Friday, February 10, 2017; 10:15-11:30 am

Finding the Person: The Importance of Storytelling and Storylistening in Mental Health

Hannah B. Harvey, PhD, Professional Storyteller and Lecturer, The Great Courses

CMHC Auditorium, 34 Park St.

Details / Download to your calendar 

Friday, February 17, 2016; 10:15-11:30 am

ADHD and Substance Use Disorders in Youth and Adults

Frances R. Levin, MD, Kennedy-Leavy Professor of Psychiatry, Division of Substance Abuse, Columbia University Medical Center

CMHC Auditorium, 34 Park St.

Details / Download to your calendar 

Friday, February 24, 2016; 10:15-11:30 am

Advances in Social and Emotional Learning, Practice, and Policy: Implications for the Well-Being and Mental Health of Children

Roger P. Weissberg, PhD, Distinguished Professor, Psychology and Education, University of Illinois at Chicago

CMHC Auditorium, 34 Park St.

Details / Download to your calendar 

VA/Psychiatry Grand Rounds Shuttle

Door-to-door shuttle service is provided from the VA to Psychiatry Grand Rounds at CMHC. Take the Yale University Shuttle that leaves the VA beginning at 9:00 am and every 20 minutes thereafter. Tell the driver you are going to CMHC. The shuttle will leave CMHC at 11:45 am for a return to the VA. Riders should meet in front of CMHC.

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