Department of Psychiatry
Penn Behavioral Health

Research Programs

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Basic Science Research


The path from investigation to the bedside is not always straightforward. Many basic science researchers focus on questions that do not have immediate clinical significance. Nonetheless, their efforts may produce findings that, through an unanticipated route, may be used by others to unlock scientific and medical puzzles that advance patient care. Some basic scientists, though, work closer to clinical applications, such as identifying genes that may cause or exacerbate disease.


Center for Neurobiology and Behavior

The Center for Neurobiology and Behavior is a focal point for our basic science translational work. Here, for example, scientists working at the cellular or molecular levels search for genes that may predispose individuals to certain disorders, including bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, or study the essential neurobiology of these and other illnesses. Other investigators seek the genetic basis for human obesity or examine how anti-depressant and anti-anxiety drugs work.

To visit the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior website, please click here.


Translational Neuroscience Program

The Translational Neuroscience Program (TNP) is multidisciplinary research program that is dedicated to the treatment and understanding of psychiatric diseases and behavioral disorders.  There are multiple laboratories within the TNP and research addresses a broad range of issues including:

  • Developmental disorders such as Autism Spectrum, Fragile X and Rett’s Syndrome
  • Major psychiatric disorders such as Depression, Drug Abuse, and Schizophrenia
  • Cognitive disabilities across a wide range of disorders
  • Neuroendocrinology and control of energy balance (e.g. feeding and metabolism)
  • Commercialization and application of technology

Research in the program is divided between the development of innovative treatment strategies and basic discovery science.  Additionally, the program collaborates with researchers and clinicians across The University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University, The University of Aachen (Germany), and Penn State Hershey Medical Center, as well as a host of Academic and Industry partners around the world.

To visit the Translational Neuroscience Program website, please click here.