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Yoga/mindfulness instructor Anne Dutton (center) assists with a pose at the Yale Stress Center.
Photo: Robert Lisak

Conquering stress, reversing its damage

Yale Stress Center clinical services integrate behavioral and physical health care with emphasis on early intervention, prevention and symptom reduction. Individualized care plans can incorporate therapy, biofeedback, weight loss (based on nutrition, exercise and fitness training), acupuncture, yoga and mindfulness meditation, in whatever combination a patient needs. Rajita Sinha, PhD, Foundations' Fund Professor of Psychiatry, is the center's director. Read more 

Commencement awards announced

At its annual commencement ceremonies, Yale's Department of Psychiatry announced the recipients of national and departmental awards. A commencement ceremony for 18 residents and 23 fellows was held on June 8th. On June 5th, the department's psychology section celebrated 21 trainees who completed the Psychology Predoctoral Internship Program. Read more 

Study finds smoking history not assessed in cancer trials

Cancer trials typically do not assess smoking history of participants even though studies have shown tobacco use has adverse effects on cancer treatments, researchers report in the Journal of Cancer Oncology. The lead author on the study was Yale psychiatry postdoctoral researcher Erica N. Peters, PhD. Read more / View the study 

Antidepressants may increase risk of preterm birth

Women who are depressed during pregnancy are not at higher risk of giving birth prematurely than non-depressed women but those who take antidepressants during pregnancy seem to be, a new study by Yale researchers shows. Kimberly Yonkers, MD, professor of psychiatry and of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences, is lead author. Read more / View the study 

Burden of full & subsyndromal PTSD in police who responded to the World Trade Center disaster

New research suggests that, despite greater resilience to PTSD, 15.4% of police who responded to the World Trade Center disaster endorse symptoms of subsyndromal PTSD that do not reach the level for a formal diagnosis of PTSD, but which are nonetheless associated with elevated rates of other psychiatric disorders and functional difficulties. Robert H. Pietrzak, MPH, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry at Yale, is lead author. Read more / View the study 

Smoking 'quitlines' could help identify hazardous drinkers

Toll,Ben,Headshot,100x100A first-of-its-kind study of drinking and smoking-cessation rates among callers to the New York State Smokers' Quitline has found that a high proportion of the smokers calling also drank at hazardous levels. Benjamin Toll, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry at Yale, is lead author. Read more / View the study 

Antidepressant may hold promise for addiction and PTSD

Researchers are pursuing early indications that ketamine may have some benefit for alcohol addiction and post-traumatic stress disorder. Ismene Petrakis, MD, professor of psychiatry at Yale and chief of psychiatry for the VA Connecticut Healthcare System, is the principal investigator of a study to evaluate the efficacy of ketamine in reducing depressive symptoms in subjects with a comorbid major depressive episode and alcohol dependence. Read more 

Ponce elected to board of psychology training organization

Allison N. Ponce, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry at Yale, has been elected to serve on the Board of Directors of the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC). Her three-year term begins in August 2012. Read more 

A firm foothold in the genetics of autism

The May 2012 issue of Medicine@Yale features a profile of Matthew W. State, MD, PhD, Donald J. Cohen Professor in the Child Study Center and professor of psychiatry and of genetics. Find out more about our department's deputy chair for research, including what triggered his interest in genetics. Read more 

Women's Health Research at Yale grant will fund study of gender specific mechanisms underlying smoking addiction

Women's Health Research at Yale supports new research that is expected to advance scientific knowledge and to improve women's health. Using PET scanning, Irina Esterlis, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry at Yale, will take the first steps in investigating whether treatments targeting metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR5) may be a better option for helping women quit smoking. Read more 

Department pilots mentorship program for junior faculty

Yale's Department of Psychiatry is piloting a new mentorship program to provide targeted support for junior faculty members to help them navigate the promotion process, take advantage of as many career development opportunities as possible and ultimately, to make their strongest case for advancement. Marina Picciotto, PhDSamuel Ball, PhD, and Robert Rohrbaugh, MD, developed the program. Read more 

CMHC CEO launches "bike to work" initiative

Michael Sernyak, MD, professor of psychiatry at Yale and CEO of the Connecticut Mental Health Center, encourages employees to bike to work. Sernyak, a competitive bike racer in his youth, recently got back on two wheels to come to work two days a week, pedaling 15 miles in an hour each way. Read more at the New Haven Independent 

Westport teen wins top NIDA Addiction Science Award

A project by Westport Conn. high school student John Edward Solder that maps dopamine circuits in the prefrontal cortex through optogenetic manipulation won top honors in this year's annual Addiction Science Awards at the 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) - the world's largest science competition for high school students. Solder was mentored by Yale psychiatry faculty. Read more 

Alumni Spotlight 

Alum appointed senior academic dean at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry

Jeffrey M. Lyness, MD, an alum of the department's residency program, will become the senior associate dean for Academic Affairs for the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. Lyness, who was appointed associate dean for Academic Affairs a year ago, has been director of curriculum for medical student education since 2008 and medical director of continuing medical education since 2010. Read more 

Examining "presentation bias" at APA

A new study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology finds that research presented to psychiatrists during their annual meeting is biased on the positive contributions of new medications. Srijan Sen, MD, PhD, a Yale psychiatry alum, and Maya Prabhu, MD, MSc, LLB, a clinician who will become an assistant professor of psychiatry at Yale on July 1st, are co-authors. Read more 

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Staff Spotlight

Department thanks longtime university employees for service

Please join the Yale School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry in congratulating and thanking Yale employees in the department who have reached service anniversaries this year. Read more 

CME Opportunity

The development of the parent as a person

Fri, July 20 and Sat, July 21, 2012: This unique clinical-research conference is built around a clinical case in which the patient's parents and children were part of an intensive treatment process at Austen Riggs. The CME-eligible conference will examine how cutting-edge findings clarify and deepen our understanding of both competent and problematic parenting. The event will be held at the Austen Riggs Center in Stockbridge, MA. Read more and register online 

Photo Album: Around the Department

1. Special Psychiatry Resident Grand Rounds: David Williams, MPH, PhD (left) with Ezra Griffith, MD (right). Watch video of the Williams presentation

2. Lustman Awards Luncheon: (left to right) Jonathan Katz, MD; Susan Katz, JD; Lustman Award recipient Kyle Williams, MD; Chris Pittenger, MD; and Robert Malison, MD (not pictured: Lustman Award recipient Chadi Abdallah, MD; and Gerard Sanacora, MD, PhD).

3. Power Day II: (left to right) David Ross, MD, PhD; Power Day Award recipient Sean Glass, MD; Richard Belitsky, MD; and medical student Irina Shklyar.

4. 2012 Yale NAACP Career Fair: Tichianaa Armah, MD (right) engages two high school students. Other participating doctors included Frank Appah, MD, PhD; Jose Bejarano, MD; and Joshua Joseph, MD (Internal Medicine).

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