Christopher Pittenger, MD, Ph.D. 

Chris Pittenger completed his undergraduate education and a Master's in Biochemistry at Yale, and his MD and Ph.D. degrees at Columbia University.  His Ph.D. studies were with 2000 Nobel Prize winner Eric Kandel.  He trained in psychiatry at Yale from 2003-2007 and was a member, and later chief resident, of Yale's research-oriented psychiatry residency track, the Neuroscience Research Training Program (NRTP).  He joined the facutly at Yale in 2007 and was recently promoted to the rank of Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Psychology, and in the Yale Child Study Center.  He is a faculty member of the Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program and on several institutional training grants.

Dr. Pittenger pursues both basic and clinical research focused on the normal function of the basal ganglia in coordinating behavior and their perturbation in neuropsychiatric disease, with a particular focus on obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and Tourette syndrome (TS).  The laboratory has an explicitly translational focus, seeking to extend particular investigations from molecules to mice to man.  

In addition to running PittLab, Dr. Pittenger is the Director of the Yale OCD Research Clinic ( and is Associate Director of the Neuroscience Research Training Program (

 He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Laughlin Fellowship from American College of Psychiatrists, the Chairman's Award from the Yale Department of Psychiatry, two Young Investigator Awards from NARSAD, research awards from the Tourette Syndrome Association, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, and  the American Psychiatric Association, and a prestigious Biobehavioral Research Award for Innovative New Scientists (B.R.A.I.N.S.) from the National Institute of Mental Health.  He is a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Foundation, the Education and Training Committee of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, and the Achievement Awards Committee of the Society for Neuroscience; he is also a member of the Society of Biological Psychiatry and the American Psychiatric Association.

For more information on Dr. Pittenger's background, bio, and publications, please visit


In the news

Yale Daily News profiles the Yale OCD Research Clinic:

Chris Pittenger chosen as an inaugural Allison Family Foundation Scholar:

Connecticut Mental Health Center's Center Focus profiles the Yale OCD Research Clinic:

2010 BRAINS award from the NIMH:

Profile at the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation:

2009 Society for Neuroscience Career Development Award:

Interview on Where We Live, on Connecticut Public Radio: