Department Of Psychiatry

  • Vanderbilt University

    Study links depression scores, white blood cell count

    Researchers across four health care systems, including Vanderbilt University Medical Center, have found that increased depression polygenic scores are associated with increased white blood cell count, highlighting the importance of the immune system in the etiology of depression. Read More

    Dec 2, 2021

  • schizophrenia

    Brain circuits in schizophrenia

    Vanderbilt psychiatrists are probing brain circuit hyperactivity implicated in schizophrenia, with the idea that normalizing the hyperactivity may improve cognitive processes. Read More

    Sep 20, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Depression and the brain-age gap

    Older depressed adults show accelerated brain aging, according to a new study from Vanderbilt researchers, who suggest that the effects of depression may speed the decline in cognitive functions in older individuals. Read More

    Oct 19, 2020

  • thalamus

    Pinpointing brain changes in psychosis

    Specific regions of the thalamus — a central brain region — are smaller in adults with psychotic disorders and youth at risk for psychotic disorders and are associated with cognitive impairment. Read More

    Oct 1, 2020

  • schizophrenia

    A connection to schizophrenia

    The insula, a small region of the brain involved in diverse brain functions had widespread dysconnectivity in schizophrenia, Vanderbilt researchers found. Read More

    Jun 23, 2020

  • man in 30s, possibly caucasian, sitting against a concrete wall with his head in his hands as if in anguish

    Study finds ‘frozen’ fear response may underlie PTSD

    To explore how fear becomes entrenched, VUMC researchers traveled down the precise neuronal pathways in the brains of mice that trigger fear responses, and which normally extinguish the behaviors once the danger has passed. Read More

    Nov 27, 2019

  • illustration of head dissolving into pixels

    Relational memory in early psychosis

    Studies of relational memory function may reveal novel mechanisms for therapeutic intervention for patients in the early stages of psychosis. Read More

    Sep 10, 2019

  • Boy looking through blinds

    Defective transporter linked to autism

    A first-of-its-kind mouse model may help reveal mechanistic underpinnings for the altered behaviors of autism spectrum disorder. Read More

    Jul 24, 2019

  • Pediatric health conditions, their treatments and the related stress hinder the prefrontal cortex, which is the region of the brain associated with learning, memory and behavior. (istock)

    Working memory in psychotic disorders

    Functional MRI studies have revealed that targeting activation of certain brain regions may improve working memory and cognition in psychotic disorders. Read More

    Jul 11, 2019

  • sad or anxious young white man sitting on front porch of apartment building with his hands clasped

    Early detection of schizophrenia

    Inhibited temperament—a tendency to respond to novelty with wariness, fear or caution—may be a risk factor for schizophrenia that could be targeted for preventative interventions. Read More

    Jun 24, 2019

  • illustration of head dissolving into pixels

    Brain aging occurs at accelerated rate in patients with psychosis

    Normal brain aging patterns in patients with a psychotic disorder occur at an accelerated rate, impacting the patient’s cognitive functioning and suggesting treatment intervention in the early psychosis period may improve long-term outcomes. Read More

    Mar 7, 2019

  • Sad african american woman looking out of the window on rainy weather

    Reversing stress-related anxiety

    Inhibiting COX-2 — an enzyme associated with inflammation — could provide a novel therapeutic approach for stress-related psychiatric disorders. Read More

    Feb 14, 2019

  • Elderly woman looking out window

    Nicotine patch shows promise in treating late-life depression

    A Vanderbilt University Medical Center pilot study of treating late-life depression in nonsmokers with transdermal nicotine (nicotine patch) has yielded some promising results, but the study’s author cautions that more study is needed. Read More

    Sep 6, 2018

  • Vanderbilt University

    Shaping reward circuits

    Using techniques to control and monitor the activities of individual neurons, Vanderbilt investigators are probing the brain’s reward circuitry. Read More

    May 18, 2018

  • Vanderbilt University

    Bladder pain syndrome no laughing matter for comedian

    Local comedian Ashley Corby, 35, overshares with her audience as part of her standup routine, including a 5-minute bit about “shady” rest areas she has visited due to interstitial cystitis (IC), a bladder pain syndrome affecting 3 million to 8 million people in the United States. Read More

    May 17, 2018

  • Vanderbilt University

    Brain connections in schizophrenia

    Brain imaging studies have implicated the connection between two brain regions in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Read More

    Mar 9, 2018

  • Gift supports addiction medicine training program

    Gift supports addiction medicine training program

    The 2016 Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs and Health, “Facing Addiction in America,” leaves little question about the growing problem of addiction. Read More

    Feb 8, 2018

  • arm with IV line

    Study seeks to aid diagnosis, management of catatonia

    Catatonia, a syndrome of motor, emotional and behavioral abnormalities frequently characterized by muscular rigidity and a trance-like mental stupor and at times manifesting with great excitement or agitation, can occur during a critical illness and appear similar to delirium. But the management strategies are vastly different. Read More

    Dec 7, 2017

  • L-r: (first row) Alissa M. Weaver, Lorraine M. Lopez, Alyssa H. Hasty, David Zald, Mariann R. Piano, (second row) Richard B. Simerly, Vsevolod V. Gurevich, Matthew J. Tyska, Daniel J. Gervais, Warren D. Taylor, Danny G. Winder and Susan R. Wente. (Joe Howell/Vanderbilt)

    Celebration honors 11 new endowed chair holders

    Eleven Vanderbilt University faculty members named to endowed chairs were recognized for their outstanding scholarship and research during a celebration at the Student Life Center Nov. 29. Read More

    Dec 5, 2017

  • Vanderbilt University

    Gender, pain and dementia

    Understanding sex differences in pain perception could lead to more targeted and effective pain assessment and management strategies in older adults with Alzheimer’s disease. Read More

    Oct 16, 2017