Department of Psychiatry Faculty Receive 2018 ACNP Travel Awards & Are Elected as ACNP Members

Congratulations are in order for Drs. Marianne Seney, Ryan Logan, and Deepak Sarpal (pictured above), who received travel awards to attend the annual meeting of The American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP). In addition, Konasale M. Prasad, MD, MBBS was elected as a member of ACNP, and Rebecca Price, PhD, was elected as an associate member. 

The ACNP Annual Meeting, which was held on December 9–13, 2018 in Hollywood, Florida, provides attendees with the opportunity to participate in a rigorous exchange of ideas and information pertaining to the brain, behavior and psychotropic drugs.

Drs. Logan, Sarpal and Seney were selected through a competitive application process, which recognizes the contributions of promising young scientists in the field of neuropsychopharmacology. The travel award provided them the opportunity to attend the meeting and to present a poster abstract on their work.

Marianne L. Seney, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, focuses on mood and anxiety disorders in women, and is exploring novel targets and/or new research trajectories for development of better, possibly sex-specific treatments. Her current work examines the role of genetic sex in affect regulation.

Ryan Logan, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, focuses on the role of circadian rhythms in addiction and other psychiatric diseases. He is currently investigating the cell type-specific role of the circadian transcription factor NPAS2 in the regulation of cocaine-related reward behaviors. He is also using CRISPR technology to develop novel tools to target distinct cell types within specific brain regions.

Deepak K. Sarpal, MD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, focuses on the treatment of first-episode psychosis. In his current research, Dr. Sarpal is examining the functional neural circuitry that underlies successful treatment with clozapine, seeking to identify biomarkers that will allow for the efficient use of clozapine in patients with refractory illness. Dr. Sarpal is also the Director of the Services for Treatment of Early Psychosis Clinic at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

The Department of Psychiatry is also pleased to recognize the new ACNP memberships of Dr. Konasale Prasad and Dr. Rebecca Price. Membership in the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology signifies major peer recognition of research accomplishments and contributions to the field. 

Dr. Konasale PrasadDr. Prasad, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, is a nationally recognized researcher in the field of schizophrenia. He is currently Principal Investigator on two R01 grants from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): one examines dimensional outcomes and neural circuitry associated with psychosis risk, and the other evaluates synaptic pruning and a risk gene in schizophrenia. 

Dr. Rebecca PriceDr. Price, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Psychology, focuses on the neural and neurocognitive substrates of anxiety, depression and suicidality. Dr. Price’s study “Testing a Synergistic, Neuroplasticity-Based Intervention for Depressive Cognition” is supported by an R01 BRAINS Award from the NIMH.

The Department of Psychiatry congratulates Drs. Logan, Sarpal and Seney on their travel awards, and Drs. Prasad and Price on their memberships to ACNP.