Mary Phillips, MD, MD (Cantab)

Dr. Mary Phillips is the Pittsburgh Foundation-Emmerling Endowed Chair in Psychotic Disorders, and Professor in Psychiatry and Clinical and Translational Science in the University of Pittsburgh. She heads the Clinical and Translational Affective Neuroscience Program, and is Director of the Collaborative on Mood Disorders Research in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh.

Dr. Phillips’ research focuses on using multimodal neuroimaging techniques to elucidate functional and structural abnormalities in emotion processing, reward processing and emotional regulation circuitries that are associated with symptom dimensions of mood and anxiety disorders. Her research also focuses on identifying the neurodevelopmental trajectories in these circuitries that are associated with the development of such disorders in youth and infants, and the extent to which these neuroimaging techniques can identity biomarkers reflecting underlying pathophysiologic processes that denote future risk for these disorders in as yet unaffected youth. Her more recent work examines how neuromodulation techniques can be targeted on identified neural biomarkers of mood disorders, as a step toward developing new interventions for individuals with these disorders. She works in collaboration with basic neuroscientists in translational studies of neural circuitry abnormalities in these disorders.

Dr. Phillips trained in Medicine at Cambridge University, UK, and in Psychiatry at the Maudsley Hospital and the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College, University of London, UK. She joined the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh as a full time faculty member in July, 2005. In 2005, Dr. Phillips became a member of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology; in 2012, she became a Fellow of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology; and, in 2014, she became a member of the American Society of Clinical Investigation. In 2016, she was elected to the Scientific Council of the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation; in 2017, she became President Elect of the Society of Biological Psychiatry; and, in 2018, President of this society. She has served on the Membership Committee of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, and on Program Committees of both the Society of Biological Psychiatry and the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, and was elected to the Council of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology in 2019. In 2006, she was awarded the Nellie Blumenthal Independent Investigator Award by the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation (National Alliance for Research in Schizophrenia and Depression). In 2014, she received the Joel Elkes Research Prize of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, and, in 2017, the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation Colvin Prize for Research in Mood Disorders. In 2019, she received the University of Pittsburgh Chancellor’s Distinguished Research Award, and a Method to Extend Research in Time (MERIT) award from the National Institute of Mental Health,  became Director of the Collaborative on Mood Disorders Research in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh, and was elected to the council of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology. She received the George N. Thompson Award for Distinguished Service from SOBP in 2020 and more recently became Director of the Center for Research in Translational and Developmental Affective Neuroscience in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Dr. Phillips has received numerous research funding awards from the National Institute of Mental Health, and the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation in the U.S., and the Medical Research Council and the Wellcome Trust in the UK. Dr. Phillips has mentored over 60 junior investigators, including being mentor to 13 K awardees, has extensive national and international collaborations, and has authored or co-authored more than 350 publications.