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Kelsey Fellowship Brings Bates Undergrads to McLean Labs

Former Board Chair David Barlow has endowed a fellowship that forges a closer relationship between two institutions that are dear to his heart: McLean Hospital and his alma mater, Bates College. The John Kelsey Fellowship is named after the retired Bates professor who built the college’s neuroscience program and nurtured generations of neuroscientists, including Bill Carlezon, PhD, chief...

Neuroscientists Reveal How Brain Circuits Are Affected by Infections in Mothers and Newborns

McLean Hospital neuroscientists have found that immune system activation during pregnancy and right at birth can cause alterations in an offspring's brain neural circuits during young adulthood that are consistent with behavioral symptoms common in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental conditions. The detailed findings are available in the March 28, 2018, issue of the Journal of...

McLean Hospital Neuroscientists Find Immune System in Newborns May Affect Developing Brain

McLean Hospital neuroscientists have found that even a brief episode of immune system activation within days of birth can cause persistent changes in sleep patterns concurrent with increases in epilepsy-like brain activity—a combination of symptoms common in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental conditions. The detailed findings are available in the January 12, 2018 issue...

Carlezon Agrees to Continue as Neuropsychopharmacology Editor in Chief

Bill Carlezon, PhD, chief of McLean’s Division of Basic Neuroscience and director of the Behavioral Genetics Laboratory, has agreed to continue in his role as editor in chief of Neuropsychopharmacology, the official journal of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, until December 31, 2022. In addition to his efforts to attract and publish cutting-edge clinical and preclinical...

Being Bullied May Dramatically Affect Sleep Suggests New McLean Hospital Research

New research from McLean Hospital neuroscientists shows in an animal model that being bullied can have long-term, dramatic effects on sleep and other circadian rhythm-related functions, symptoms that are characteristic of clinical depression and other stress-induced mental illnesses. The researchers, however, also found that it may be possible to mitigate these effects with the use of an...

Q & A: Bill Carlezon, PhD, Chief, Center of Excellence in Basic Neuroscience at McLean

Bill Carlezon, PhD, leads McLean’s Center of Excellence in Basic Neuroscience, where researchers are working to understand the role brain function plays in psychiatric illnesses. We spoke with him to get an update on the center, which includes approximately 20 labs funded by more than $18 million in federal and private grants. Horizons: What are some of the research questions your team is...

Bill Carlezon: Winner of the 2016 Anne M. Cataldo Excellence in Mentoring Award

Bill Carlezon, PhD, is the winner of this year’s prestigious Anne M. Cataldo Excellence in Mentoring Award. The award was established at McLean to honor Dr. Anne Cataldo’s many achievements and to celebrate her legacy as an exceptional and influential mentor. She was known and loved for her generous spirit and exceptional teaching ability and the award is given annually to someone who...

Brain Geography: Map Details Newly Identified Regions of the Mind

The human brain is a world unto itself and still holds great potential for discovery. When we describe its structure and functionality, we often refer to the left and right hemispheres and the four lobes—frontal, temporal, occipital, and parietal. There are, however, many smaller, distinct regions within our mind, each with its own specialization. History of Brain Mapping Up to this point...

Improving Lives Through Innovative Translational Research

Scientists at McLean Hospital are gaining more insight into the causes of mental illness, neuropsychiatric disorders, and neurodevelopmental disorders by using cutting-edge approaches and technology to manipulate pathways and circuits in the brains of animals that produce behaviors similar to humans. “McLean is at the forefront of building new treatments and interventions based on our...

Department of Defense Grant Looks At Nicotine’s Role in PTSD

Researchers at McLean’s Behavioral Genetics Lab are using animal models to study the effects of nicotine on vulnerability to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in a study funded by the Department of Defense (DoD). While the three-year, $600,000 study still has a year left to go, preliminary findings suggest that use of nicotine may be helpful in preventing some of the core signs of PTSD...

Responsibility and Privilege: McLean Faculty Serving as Journal Editors Influence the Field

The Archives of General Psychiatry (Archives) made quite a stir in July of 2011 when it published a twins study suggesting that autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has both genetic heritability and a significant environmental component. Picked up by the mass media, including NBC Nightly News, The New York Times, and others, the California Autism Twins Study (CATS) “marked an important shift in...