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Neuroscience and Novel Therapeutics Unit

Dr. Melissa Brotman Biography

Dr. Melissa BrotmanDr. Melissa A. Brotman, an Assistant Clinical Investigator, is Director of the Neuroscience and Novel Therapeutics Unit (NNT) in the Emotion and Development Branch at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Intramural Research Program (IRP). Dr. Brotman received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, where she specialized in cognitive behavioral therapy for mood and anxiety disorders. After completing her clinical internship at the Veterans Affairs Maryland Health Care System/University of Maryland-Baltimore, she completed post-doctoral training in neuroscience, focusing on functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and clinical phenotyping of severe irritability in youth. Currently, her neurodevelopmental, translational research integrates basic and clinical approaches to the study of mood disorders in children and adolescents. Specifically, she uses affective neuroscience techniques to understand the brain-based mechanisms underlying severe irritability in youth, and leverages pathophysiological knowledge to guide the development of novel targeted interventions.

Dr. Brotman is Principal Investigator on NIMH protocol 15-M-0182 examining two novel, mechanism-based treatments for severe irritability in youth: (1) a computer-based treatment, interpretation bias training (IBT) that targets face emotion processing; and (2) an exposure-based cognitive-behavioral research therapy. Recruitment for both studies is ongoing.

Dr. Brotman is a Member of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) and Chair of the ACNP Membership Advisory Task Force. She has received multiple research awards, including the NIMH IRP Seymour S. Kety Memorial Training Award, Society of Biological Psychiatry Travel Award, ACNP Young Investigator Memorial Travel Award, and Career Development Institute Award. She was awarded a 2018 NIH Bench-to-Bedside grant, is a consultant on numerous extramural grants, and is on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Affective Disorders and PLOS ONE. Finally, mentoring is a focal aspect of her career, and her mentorship was recently recognized through the NIMH Outstanding Mentor Award.

Contact Information

Director, Neuroscience and Novel Therapeutics Unit
Emotion and Development Branch
National Institute of Mental Health
9000 Rockville Pike, Building 15K
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
brotmanm@mail.nih.gov, (301) 435-6645