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Director's Message

New conceptual approaches to the treatment of mental illness have been sparse for decades. This is, in large part, due to our limited fundamental understanding of how mental disorders arise in the brain. Understanding how the brain processes the sensory world, executes cognitive functions and gives rise to emotions, as well as uncovering how these functions deteriorate in disease, represent some of the greatest challenges of the 21st century.

To meet these challenges, the Center for Psychiatric Neuroscience brings together and supports investigators with a common goal of understanding neural mechanisms underlying psychiatric illness, elucidating mechanisms of psychotropic drug action and developing novel therapeutic modalities for mental illness.

The center provides infrastructure, community and educational opportunities to enable investigators to contribute to our vision to be a nationally recognized nexus for rigorous, innovative and impactful scientific investigation aimed at improving mental health through a deeper understanding of brain function. To that end, the center, synergizing with existing Northwestern centers and departments, will house a group of tightly knit and collaborative physicians and scientists focused on revealing pathophysiological mechanisms underlying major psychiatric disorders and how to translate these discoveries toward the identification and exploitation of new targets for therapeutics development.

Dr-Sachin-Patel-150-225.jpgSachin Patel, MD, PhD

Director, Center for Psychiatric Neuroscience
Chair, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
Lizzie Gilman Professor of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences