Linda Mayes, MD

Arnold Gesell Professor of Child Psychiatry, Pediatrics and Psychology in the Yale Child Study Center; Chair, Yale Child Study Center; Special Advisor, Dean

Departments & Organizations

Child Study Center: Advanced Clinical Social Work Fellowship | Albert J. Solnit Integrated Training Program | Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Training Program | Child Study Center - Scholastic Collaboration | Infancy & Early Childhood Program | Predoctoral Internship and Postdoctoral Fellowship in Psychology

Developmental Follow-Up Clinic (Newborn Follow-Up Clinic)

Developmental Neurocognitive Driving Simulation Research Center (DrivSim Lab)

Division of Women's Behavioral Health Research

Drug use, Addiction, and HIV Research Scholars (DAHRS)

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Research Clinic

Stress & Addiction Clinical Research Program

Yale Center for Health & Learning Games

Yale Medicine


Dr. Linda Mayes is the Arnold Gesell Professor of Child Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Psychology and Director of the Yale Child Study Center. She is also Special Advisor to the Dean in the Yale School of Medicine. Trained as a pediatrician, Dr. Mayes’s research focuses on stress-response and regulatory mechanisms in young children at both biological and psychosocial risk. She has especially focused on the impact of prenatal substance use on children’s long-term outcomes. She has made contributions to understanding the mechanisms of effect of prenatal stimulant exposure on the ontogeny of arousal regulatory systems and the relation between dysfunctional emotional regulation and impaired prefrontal cortical function in young children. She has published widely in the developmental psychology, pediatrics, and child psychiatry literature.

Given the nature of her work with children at significantly high-risk for developmental impairments from both biological and psychosocial etiologies, Dr. Mayes also focuses on the impact of parenting on the development of arousal and attention regulatory mechanisms in their children, and specifically on how substance abuse impacts reward and stress regulatory systems in new parents. With other colleagues in the Center, she studies how adults transition to parenthood, especially when substance abuse is involved, and the basic neural circuitry of early parent-infant attachment using both neuroimaging and electroencephalographic techniques. She and her colleagues have developed a series of interventions for parents including an intensive home-based program called Minding the Baby.

Dr. Mayes's research programs are multidisciplinary, not only in their blending basic science with clinical interventions but also in the disciplines required including adult and child psychiatry, behavioral neuroscience, obstetrics, pediatrics, and neuropsychology.

She is also a Distinguished Visiting Professor in psychology at Sewanee: The University of the South where she is working on intervention programs to enhance child and family resilience.

Education & Training

MD Vanderbilt University (1977)
Postdoctoral fellow Yale University School of Medicine
Robert Wood Johnson Fellow Yale University School of Medicine
Postdoctoral Fellow Vanderbilt University Hospital
Resident Vanderbilt University
Research Fellow Western New England Institute for Psychoanalysis
Board Certification AB of Pediatrics, Pediatrics (1981)

Honors & Recognition

  • Doctor of Science (honoris causa) University of the South (1994)


  • Children in Orphanages Russia (2008)

    Professor Mayes collaborates with Dr. Vladislav Ruchkin on studies of young children in Russian orphanages.

  • Orphanages Israel (2008)

    Professor Mayes conducts collaborative research with a colleague at Hebrew University on studies of children in Eastern European orphanages.

  • Substance Abuse and Parenting Finland (2008)

    Professor Mayes is involved in a study in Finland concerning the impact of substance abuse on parenting capacities.

  • Child mental health centre research on child mental health interventions London, United Kingdom (2003)

    Chairman, Directorial Team of the Anna Freud Centre and Visiting Professor, University College London

  • Parenting Israel (2003)

    Professor Mayes collaborates with a colleague at Bar-ilan University on cross-cultural studies of parenting among high-risk families.

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Contact Info

Linda Mayes, MD
Patient Care Location
Yale Child Study CenterNieson Irving Harris Building
230 South Frontage Road

New Haven, CT 06519
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Mailing Address
Child Study CenterPO Box 207900
230 South Frontage Road

New Haven, CT 06520-7900

Curriculum Vitae

Developmental Electrophysiology Laboratory