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Edward Stuart Brodkin

Associate Professor of Psychiatry
Attending Psychiatrist, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, University of Pennsylvania Health System, Philadelphia, PA
Affiliated faculty member, Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania
Attending Psychiatrist, Presbyterian Hospital, University of Pennsylvania Health System, Philadelphia, PA
Member, Mahoney Institute for Neurosciences (MINS), University of Pennsylvania
Member, Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics (ITMAT), University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Attending Psychiatrist, Pennsylvania Hospital, University of Pennsylvania Health System, Philadelphia, PA
Faculty Member, Center for Autism Research, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Diversity Search Advisor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania
Founder and Director, Adult Autism Spectrum Program, Penn Medicine and Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
Psychiatrist, Psychiatrist, Professionalism Program at Penn Medicine Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
Co-Director, Autism Spectrum Program of Excellence (ASPE), Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Member, Biomedical Postdoctoral Program (BPP) Fellowship Review Committee, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Moderator, Support Groups for Frontline Healthcare Professionals during the COVID-19 Pandemic, Penn Medicine, Philadelphia, PA
Faculty Advisor, Faculty Advisor to Postdoctoral Peer Support Program, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Director of Behavioral Health, Armellino Center of Excellence for Williams Syndrome, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Department: Psychiatry
Graduate Group Affiliations

Contact information
Center for Neurobiology and Behavior
Department of Psychiatry
Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Translational Research Laboratory, Room 2202
125 South 31st Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3403
Office: (215)-746-0118
Fax: (215)-573-2041
A.B. (History of Science)
Harvard University, 1988.
M.D. (Medicine)
Harvard Medical School, 1992.
Post-Graduate Training
Intern in Pediatrics, Yale-New Haven Medical Center, New Haven, 1992-1993.
Resident in Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, 1993-1996.
Chief Resident in Psychiatry, Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit, Yale University School of Medicine, 1995-1995.
Postdoctoral Fellow, Neuroscience Research, Laboratory of Eric J. Nestler, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, 1996-1998.
Postdoctoral Fellow, Genetics Research, Laboratory of Lee M. Silver, Ph.D., Department of Molecular Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, 1998-2002.
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Description of Research Expertise


Treatments to enhance social functioning in adults with autism spectrum disorders. Neurobiology and genetics of of social behavior development, and neurobiology and genetics of autism and spectrum disorders.


autism; social; functioning; skills; behavior; motivation; emotion; genetics; genomics; neurobiology; brain


Measurement of social motivation, social approach, and social interactions in humans and animal models; behavioral genetics, genetic mapping, quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis; neurobiological studies of social behavior phenotypes; psychosocial and biological treatments to improve social functioning.


Our laboratory is interested in the neurobiological and genetic mechanisms of social behavior development, as well as biological mechanisms underlying social motivation, social learning, and social skill acquisition and generalization. Certain highly heritable neuropsychiatric disorders, including autism and schizophrenia spectrum disorders, are characterized by reduced social motivation, increased social anxiety, disruptions in social learning, and impairment in social skill development. Despite its importance, the fundamental biology of these social processes is not well understood, and currently available treatments for these social behavior domains are inadequate.

Our current projects include the following: 1) Studies of treatments to enhance social motivation, social understanding, and social skills and reduce social anxiety in adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD); 2) neural and genetic biomarkers in adults with ASD, 3) studies of the neurobiology and genetics of individual differences in social-emotional behavior development in humans and mouse models; 3) studies of gene-environment interactions in shaping social-emotional development.

Description of Clinical Expertise

Diagnosis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders in adults.

Selected Publications

Fairless A.H., Shah R.Y., Guthrie A.J., Li H., Brodkin E.S.: Deconstructing sociability, an autism-relevant phenotype, in mouse models. The Anatomical Record (Special Issue: “New Concepts in Developing Brain Disorders--Autism”) 294: 1713-1725, 2011.

Dow H.C., Kreibich A.S., Kaercher K.A., Sankoorikal G.M.V., Pauley E.D., Lohoff F.W., Ferraro T.N., Li H., Brodkin E.S.: Genetic dissection of intermale aggressive behavior in BALB/cJ and A/J mice. Genes, Brain and Behavior 10: 57-68, 2011.

Fairless A.H., Dow H.C., Toledo M.M., Malkus K.A., Edelmann M., Li H., Talbot K., Arnold S.E., Abel T., Brodkin E.S.: Low sociability is associated with reduced size of the corpus callosum in the BALB/cJ inbred mouse strain. Brain Research 1230: 211-217, 2008.

Brodkin E.S.: Social behavior phenotypes in fragile X syndrome, autism, and the Fmr1 knockout mouse: Theoretical comment on McNaughton et al. (2008). Behavioral Neuroscience 122: 483-489, 2008.

Brodkin E.S.: BALB/cJ mice: low sociability and other phenotypes that may be relevant to autism. Behavioural Brain Research (Special Issue on “Animal Models for Autism”) 176: 53-65, 2007.

Sankoorikal G.M.V., Kaercher K.A., Boon C.J., Lee J.K., Brodkin E.S. : A mouse model system for genetic analysis of sociability: C57BL/6J vs. BALB/cJ inbred mouse strains. Biological Psychiatry 59: 415-423, 2006.

Gillihan S.J., Farah M.J., Sankoorikal G.M.V., Breland J., Brodkin E.S.: Association between serotonin transporter genotype and extraversion. Psychiatric Genetics 17: 351-354, 2007.

Brodkin E.S., Hagemann A., Nemetski S.M., Silver L.M. : Social approach-avoidance behavior of inbred mouse strains towards DBA/2 mice. Brain Research 1002: 151-157, 2004.

Brodkin E.S., Goforth S.A., Keene A.H., Fossella J.A., Silver L.M.: Identification of quantitative trait loci that affect aggressive behavior in mice. Journal of Neuroscience 22: 1165-1170, 2002.

Carlezon W.A., Thome J., Olson V.G., Lane-Ladd S.B., Brodkin E.S., Hiroi N., Duman R.S., Neve R.L., Nestler E.J.: Regulation of cocaine reward by CREB. Science 282: 2272-2275, 1998.

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Last updated: 05/13/2024
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