School of Medicine


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  • Anna Badner

    Anna Badner

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio I am currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Stanford University in the lab of Dr. Erin Gibson. I completed my PhD at the Institute of Medical Science in the University of Toronto (2018), under the supervision of Dr. Michael Fehlings, where my thesis was focused on the peripheral inflammatory response in neurotrauma and application of immunomodulatory cell therapies to target this pathology. I subsequently spent two years as a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Sue & Bill Gross Stem Cell Research Center, University of California-Irvine (UCI), transplanting various sources of neural stem cells for traumatic brain injury. During this time, I expanded my interest in the activation of endogenous progenitors as an alternative to cell transplantation for therapeutic purposes.

  • Jean Marie Batail

    Jean Marie Batail

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio I am a MD/PhD postdoctoral scholar from Rennes in France. Before arriving in Stanford, I worked in both clinical and research fields. I leaded a unit specialized in neuropsychiatric treatment resistant disorders (mainly depression, Parkinson Disease with psychiatric comorbidities and obsessive-compulsive disorder) with two residents. In this unit, I used and coordinated neuromodulations techniques such as repetititive Trancranial Magnetic Stimulation, Electroconvulsive therapy, and Deep Brain Stimulation. In the research part of my activity, my work focused on biomarkers of poor outcome of depressive disorder using clinical/neuropsychological/brain imaging assessments. In addition, I conducted research on neurofeedback applied to depression. Apart to be involved in the national coordination of this topic for psychiatric diseases (Neurofeedback section of French Association of Biological Psychiatry and Neuropsychopharmacology https://www.afpbn.org/sections/next/), I was actively involved in the development of a new generation of brain-computer interface therapies based on joint bimodal EEG-fMRI neurofeedback. In this project, I leaded the clinical research applying this new technology to depression. I am very interested in working on biomarkers of neuropsychiatric disorders and the development of personalized-targeting neuromodulation techniques.

  • Edith Brignoni Perez

    Edith Brignoni Perez

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio Edith Brignoni Pérez completed her Ph.D. in Neuroscience at Georgetown University in June 2019. Her doctoral work focused on investigating the neurofunctional bases of reading in bilingual-biliterate children and adults, under the mentorship of Dr. Guinevere F. Eden at the Center for the Study of Learning. Edith used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate whether bilinguals rely on a different functional brain system to read words in English compared (1) to monolinguals and (2) to reading words in Spanish.

    She joined the Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics research unit in July 2019 as a postdoctoral fellow co-advised by Drs. Katherine E. Travis (Pediatrics), Heidi M. Feldman (Pediatrics), and Ian Gotlib (Psychology). Some of Edith’s current research interests include how the brain’s white matter microstructure and developmental outcomes relate to one another, particularly in infants born prematurely. She is also interested in changes to brain structure and function following early intervention of language exposure, and long-term neurodevelopmental outcomes relationship with early-life stress.

  • Hyesang Chang

    Hyesang Chang

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Current Research and Scholarly Interests My research aims to understand neural representations and brain networks that support learning and academic achievement across development to bridge the gaps between cognitive and developmental science, neuroscience, and education. I am interested in the interplay between multiple cognitive and affective systems, and neuroplasticity of these systems that give rise to individual differences in how children acquire knowledge and skills in domains important for academic and professional success.

  • Samir Chowdhury

    Samir Chowdhury

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio I am an applied mathematician trained in computational topology, geometry, and data analysis. At Stanford, I am working on developing new methods for analyzing and fingerprinting neuroimaging data and in obtaining meaningful clinical insights from such analysis.

    Prior to Stanford, I completed my PhD in the Department of Mathematics at The Ohio State University under the supervision of Facundo Mémoli. My thesis was titled "Metric and Topological Approaches to Network Data Analysis".

  • John Coetzee

    John Coetzee

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Current Research and Scholarly Interests I am presently engaged in developing innovative treatments for traumatic brain injury in Dr. Maheen Adamson's lab at the Palo Alto VA, and for depression in the Brain Stimulation Lab at Stanford.

  • Neir Eshel, MD, PhD

    Neir Eshel, MD, PhD

    Instructor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

    Bio Dr. Eshel (he/him/his) is a psychiatrist and instructor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine.

    His clinical focus is the full-spectrum mental health care of sexual and gender minorities, with particular interest in depression, anxiety, and the complex effects of trauma in this population. He works in collaboration with other primary care and mental health providers at the new Stanford LGBTQ+ program.

    His research interests include the use of optogenetic, electrophysiological, neuroimaging, and behavioral approaches to probe the neural circuits of reward processing, decision making, and social behavior. He recently won a multi-year grant from the National Institute of Mental Health to study the neural circuits of frustration and aggression.

    Dr. Eshel has published articles on topics such as the role of dopamine in learning, the neuroscience of irritability, LGBTQ health, reward and punishment processing in depression, behavioral predictors of substance use among adolescents, and the mechanism of transcranial magnetic stimulation. His work has appeared in Nature, Science, Nature Neuroscience, Annual Review of Neuroscience, JAMA, JAMA Psychiatry, Neuropsychopharmacology, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and Journal of Neuroscience. He is also the author of the book Learning: The Science Inside, a publication of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

    He has delivered presentations on anger expression in patients with PTSD, the neural circuitry of learning, dopamine prediction errors, and LGBTQ-related topics at meetings of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, Society of Biological Psychiatry, and Association of American Medical Colleges, among others. He is also an associate editor of the Journal of Gay and Lesbian Mental Health, and an ad-hoc reviewer for numerous publications including Science, JAMA Psychiatry, Biological Psychiatry, and Current Biology.


    Dr. Eshel has won honors for his scholarship and advocacy, including the Marshall Scholarship, the Outstanding Resident Award from the National Institute of Mental Health, the Science and SciLifeLab Grand Prize for Young Scientists, and the National LGBT Health Achievement Award.

    He is a member of the American Psychiatric Association, Society of Biological Psychiatry, Association of Gay & Lesbian Psychiatrists, Society for Neuroscience, and other professional associations. He is also an advocate for LGBTQ rights, recently serving as the LGBTQ Chair of the Stanford Graduate Medical Education Diversity Committee.

    Prior to Stanford, Dr. Eshel trained and conducted research at the National Institutes of Health, Princeton University, the World Health Organization, University College London, and Harvard University.

  • Mohsen Fathzadeh

    Mohsen Fathzadeh

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Current Research and Scholarly Interests I have been venturing the career of characterizing insulin resistance genes, as the underlying risk factor of type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. My earlier postdoctoral fellowship at the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine involved the functional genomic of diabetes and glycemic traits loci by using deep phenotyping approach i.e., multi-OMICs and transgenic mice.
    At my current research, I am harnessing the epigenomic analysis in the global birth cohorts. I aim to unravel the origin of insulin resistance in the etiology of diabetes, mild cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer's diseases. Certain ethnicities develop insulin resistance and diabetes even with the normal weight and at younger ages. Therefore, it is essential to distinguish genes that predispose high-risk individuals to insulin resistance in the presence or absence (lipodystrophy) of obesity.
    The main plan of my research is to expand follow-up studies on the global birth cohorts from diverse ethnic groups to eventually enable precise screening. This aim is aligned with the missions of Stanford Long-Range Planning and Precision Health to diminish health disparities. Therefore, our research supports the University mission of deep phenotyping and care of diverse patients and populations. These studies have the potential to specify mechanistic and causality insights from the drivers of diabetes and insulin resistance risk in different ethnicities. The ultimate goal of my research is to pave the way for opportunities to prevent insulin resistance as early as 10-20 years before the onset of diabetes and the age-related adverse outcomes such as vascular dementia and to reduce the widening ethnic inequalities.
    My overall goal is to promote the field of global precision medicine with an eye toward the minority and under-represented communities in genomic medicine.

  • Laura Michele Hack

    Laura Michele Hack

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio Dr. Laura Hack is a Postdoctoral Fellow and Clinical Instructor under the mentorship of Drs. Leanne Williams, Alan Schatzberg, and Ruth O’Hara. She is a translational clinician with a research passion for integrating multiple types of biological and environmental data using advanced analytic techniques into a neuroscience-based taxonomy of mood, anxiety, and stressor-related disorders. Laura envisions herself as a ‘psychiatrist of the future,’ incorporating genetic information, brain imaging, blood-based markers, and data from wearable sensors into diagnostic and treatment decisions to help relieve the suffering that arises from our current trial-and-error approach.

  • Sarah Louise Hagerty

    Sarah Louise Hagerty

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio Sarah Hagerty, Ph.D., is a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University and the Sierra Pacific Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC) at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. She graduated with a BA in Psychology from Carleton College. Recently, she completed dual PhDs in Clinical Psychology and Neuroscience at University of Colorado Boulder and pre-doctoral clinical internship at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. Broadly, Sarah is interested in identifying clinically meaningful patient subtypes based on multimodal data, which could inform personalized interventions. Ultimately, Sarah imagines a new way of conceptualizing psychiatric diagnoses, such that an understanding of biology and behavior yield precision diagnostic insights on a more nuanced, individualized basis. Sarah sees her clinical work as a rich source for scientific hypotheses and personal inspiration, and clinical interactions serve as an important reminder of her dedication to reduce human suffering and increase fulfillment through her program of research A native of Colorado, Sarah is happiest when she's on a hiking trail, playing soccer, or spending time with family. ​​​​

  • Haijing Wu Hallenbeck

    Haijing Wu Hallenbeck

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio Haijing Hallenbeck, Ph.D., is a postdoctoral fellow at the National Center for PTSD at VA Palo Alto Health Care System, in conjunction with Stanford University School of Medicine. After completing her internship at VA Palo Alto Health Care System, she earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Washington University in St. Louis. Haijing's graduate work focused on using mobile app technology for the assessment of depression. As a postdoctoral fellow, she is investigating how this technology can be adapted for purposes of treatment, particularly for PTSD and depression. She is interested in optimizing mobile apps to improve both mental health symptoms and psychosocial functioning for individuals.

  • Alesha Heath

    Alesha Heath

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry

    Bio Dr. Alesha Heath is a Postdoctoral Scholar at Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford School of Medicine and the MIRECC the VA Palo Alto. She earned her PhD from the University of Western Australia and Sorbonne University.

    Dr. Heath's research has been primarily focused on the mechanisms and applications of brain stimulation therapies, in particular repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation. Her research involves both basic and clinical components with the aim of improving the efficacy of these therapies for the treatment of disorders such as depression and Alzheimer's disease.

  • Agnieszka Kalinowski

    Agnieszka Kalinowski

    Clinical Instructor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

    Bio I am a translational physician-scientist focused on studying the role of the immune system in patients with schizophrenia. My work spans careful clinical characterization of patients to understanding mechanisms in basic science model systems, allowing to provide mechanistic understanding to observations in clinical samples. Currently, I'm focused on deciphering the role of the complement system and how the known genetic risk translates into pathophysiological disease mechanisms. I hope that this work will pave the way to novel treatment strategies.

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