Department of Psychiatry
Penn Behavioral Health

Center for Weight and Eating Disorders

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Kelly Costello Allison, PhD

Kelly C. Allison, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and Director of Education at the Center for Weight and Eating Disorders. She received her B.A. from the University of Notre Dame and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Miami University.

Dr. Allison's research interests include characterizing and treating the Night Eating Syndrome and the role of weight and eating behaviors on reproductive health.  She is also engaged in studies on bariatric surgery outcomes and clinical trials for weight and disordered eating. Dr. Allison is the Director of Education at the Center for Weight and Eating Disorders, leading didactic seminars for pre-doctoral psychology practicum students and supervising their clinical work. She serves as a faculty mentor for undergraduate and medical student research projects. Dr. Allison also enjoys providing psychotherapy related to weight loss and disordered eating through the Stunkard Weight Management Program, and she provides pre-operative bariatric surgery psychological evaluations at Penn Medicine.

Dr. Allison is a Fellow of the Academy for Eating Disorders and a member of the Obesity Society and the American Psychological Association. She has published over 80 peer-reviewed papers and chapters, and two books.

Dr. Allison can be contacted at: Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, 3535 Market St., Suite 3021, Philadelphia, PA 19104-3309, 215-898-7314. Her e-mail address is

Recent publications include:

Allison KC, Studt SK, Berkowitz RI, Hesson LA, Dubroff J, Newberg A, Stunkard AJ.  An open-label trial of escitalopram for night eating syndrome. Eating Behaviors, 14(2):199-203, 2013.

Lundgren JD, Allison KC, Stunkard AJ (Eds.) Night Eating Syndrome: Research, Assessment, and Treatment. New York: Guilford, 2012.

Allison KC, Lundgren JD, Stunkard AJ, Bulik CM, Lindroos AK, Thornton LM, Rasmussen F. Validation of Screening Questions and Symptom Coherence of Night Eating in the Swedish Twin Register. Comprehensive Psychiatry, in press.

Kumanyika S, Fassbender J, Sarwer DB, Phipps E, Allison KC, Localio R, Morales KH, Wesby L, Harralson T, Kessler R, Tan-Torres S, Han XS, Tsai AG, Wadden TA. One-year results of the Think Health! study of weight management in primary care practices. Obesity, 2012;20:1249-1257.

Allison KC, Wrotniak BH, Paré E, Sarwer DB. Psychosocial characteristics and gestational weight change among overweight, African American pregnant women. Obstetrics and Gynecology International, 2012;2012:article id 878607.

Kelly Costello Allison

Dr. Kelly C. Allison