Christopher Pittenger, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Yale OCD Research Program, has accepted the position of Assistant Chair of the Department of Psychiatry for Translational Research.
This new position has become important due to the overall growth of the department’s research portfolio and, in particular, the tremendous expansion of translational research, according to John H. Krystal, MD, Chair of Psychiatry at Yale School of Medicine.
Pittenger will be tasked with advancing efforts within the department to enhance the translation of basic research findings to clinical research, and the back-translation of clinical advances to basic research. He also will interface with groups across the Yale campus engaged in parallel efforts, including precision medicine initiatives and clinical research cores. In these efforts, he will serve on the Executive Committee of the department and will work closely with Deputy Chairs for Research Marina Picciotto, PhD, and Stephanie O’Malley, PhD.
Krystal said Pittenger has a tremendous scientific pedigree, having received his PhD in the laboratory of Nobel Laureate Eric Kandel. Since returning to Yale as a resident and then as a faculty member, he is one of the few faculty members to maintain both a basic neuroscience research lab and a clinical research program. His clinical research dives deeply into the causes, mechanisms, and treatment of OCD and related disorders. For these efforts, Pittenger has received numerous awards. Equally importantly, he has distinguished himself both locally and nationally for his commitment to the development of young investigators, particularly those at the interface of basic and clinical neuroscience research.
He has been actively engaged in issues that face faculty across the medical campus. Currently, he serves as Chair-Elect of the Dean’s Faculty Advisory Council.