Research & Publications
I have always been fascinated with understanding how neurochemical changes in the brain affect the mind and behavior. To that end, after graduating college, I worked as a research fellow for the National Institute for Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) investigating the role of indirect and direct striatal pathways on goal directed and habitual behavior utilizing mouse behavioral models. From there, I transitioned to the Mount Sinai School of Medicine as a research fellow utilizing mouse behavioral models to investigate molecular mechanisms of schizophrenia. During my time at Sinai, I utilized these skills to investigate how the interaction, dimerization and dysregulation of serotonin 2A (5-HT2A) and metabotropic Glutamate Receptor 2 (mGluR2) in prefrontal cortex manifest in schizophrenia and their role in possible treatments.
In particular, one of my most meaningful projects during that time was investigating the role of chronic unpredictable stress/infection during pregnancy and how it predisposed the offspring of those stressed mothers to developing schizophrenia. Utilizing mouse models, pregnant dams that were exposed to chronic unpredictable stress or infection during the first trimester had offspring that developed neurobiological changes in adulthood that resembled the neurobiological changes seen in people with schizophrenia.
It was through this experience that inspired me to become a physician scientist, and after 8 years of research, I matriculated to Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. In addition to his clinical/research interests, I held various leadership positions where he served as a liaison between students and faculty in voicing concerns of unconscious bias in patient care and education. My leadership efforts around promoting diversity and social justice in science and medicine earned him me James Felt Award for the Promotion of Social and Racial Justice, the AMA Minority Scholars Award, as well as being selected as keynote speaker for the Lloyd Sherman Scholars Award Day ceremony for his significant achievement and lifetime commitment to improving diversity within biomedical research.
At Yale, I have spent a long time thinking about how best to find that intersection between my interests in race-equity, research and medicine. To that end, during my time here at Yale, I have been interested in understanding the neurobiological changes that occur in response to racial trauma or perceived discrimination. Given the current times, there has been a growing source of literature that highlight the correlation between people that perceive/experience discrimination more frequently and an increased inflammatory cytokine profile, structural/neurobiological changes, and increased incidence of mental health disorders. Currently, I am collaborating with mentors both at Yale and at Sinai to investigate the role of the dorsolateral prefontal cortex in coping with perceived social discrimination.
In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my wife and dog, running, watching good horror films with friends, reading manga, and traveling.
Education & Training
- MDIcahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (2018)
- ScBBrown University, Neurobiology (2005)