Skip to main content

Transforming the understanding
and treatment of mental illnesses.

Celebrating 75 Years! Learn More >>

GenaLynne C. Mooneyham, MD, MS

Photo GenaLynne C. Mooneyham, MD, MS
Staff Clinician
Dr. Mooneyham is a Medical Officer at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland where she now serves as the Medical Director of the NIMH Autoimmune Brain Disorders Program.


Dr. Mooneyham completed her bachelor’s degree at Liberty University and her master’s degree in Medical Sciences at Indiana University School of Medicine where she worked in the developmental epigenetics research lab under the supervision of Dr. David Skalnik. Dr. Mooneyham went on to receive her Medical Doctorate from St. George’s University School of Medicine with special emphasis on education in global health. She then completed a five-year triple board residency at Indiana University School of Medicine (General Pediatrics, Adult Psychiatry, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry) where she worked as a house staff physician at Riley Hospital for Children. Dr. Mooneyham was Chief Resident (elected) for the General Psychiatry program at Indiana University and Co-Chief Resident (appointed) for the Triple Board program. During her time at Indiana University, Dr. Mooneyham was mentored by Dr. Nerissa Bauer and participated in her RO1 clinical research portfolio in Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.

After training, Dr. Mooneyham was on faculty at Duke University School of Medicine where she served as the Director for the Pediatric Consultation & Liaison Psychiatry Service within Duke Children’s Hospital and Co-Director for the Pediatric Autoimmune Brain Diseases Clinic. She went on to become the Psychiatry Clerkship Director and a research mentor for third-year medical students at Duke University School of Medicine.

Dr. Mooneyham is board certified in General Pediatrics, Adult Psychiatry, and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.

Research Interests

Dr. Mooneyham joined the National Institute of Mental Health in October of 2020. Dr. Mooneyham is actively working on the development of a trans-NIH initiative focused on facilitating translational research in Pediatric Autoimmune Brain Disorders and Neuroinflammatory conditions.

Dr. Mooneyham’s research focus is on Autoimmune Encephalitis and other immune mediated causes of psychosis. Her research includes deep clinical phenotyping along with the application of genomic technologies and immunophenotyping in patients with undiagnosed neuropsychiatric conditions. She aims to identify biomarkers and novel mechanisms of illness that may allow us to better understand the role of the immune system in neuropsychiatric conditions.

In this effort, she provides clinical care for children and adolescents with complex neuropsychiatric symptoms to include psychosis and catatonia. Dr. Mooneyham leads the NIMH inpatient pediatric psychiatry unit at the Clinical Center. She also collaborates closely with the Undiagnosed Disease Program and sees both adult and pediatric patients through the Psychiatry Consultation and Liaison Service. Dr. Mooneyham’s translational research efforts are centered on defining best practice in the collaborative care for pediatric patients with Autoimmune Encephalitis. Her work also addresses the need for patient advocacy and building consensus in disease models where multi-disciplinary care is required.

Selected Publications

Psychiatric Phenotypes of Pediatric Patients With Seropositive Autoimmune Encephalitis. Adams AV, Van Mater H, Gallentine W, Mooneyham GC. (2021) Hosp Pediatr. PMID: 34103402.

Autoimmune Encephalitis Alliance Clinicians Network. Autoimmune encephalitis: proposed best practice recommendations for diagnosis and acute management. Abboud H, Probasco JC, Irani S, Ances B, Benavides DR, Bradshaw M, Christo PP, Dale RC, Fernandez-Fournier M, Flanagan EP, Gadoth A, George P, Grebenciucova E, Jammoul A, Lee ST, Li Y, Matiello M, Morse AM, Rae-Grant A, Rojas G, Rossman I, Schmitt S, Venkatesan A, Vernino S, Pittock SJ, Titulaer MJ. (2021) J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. PMID: 33649022.

Developing Consensus in the Assessment and Treatment Pathways for Autoimmune Encephalitis in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Mooneyham GC, Ferrafiat V, Stolte E, Fuchs DC, Cohen D. (2021) Front Psychiatry. PMID: 33854451

Non-N-methyl-D-aspartate Autoimmune Encephalopathy and Catatonia Treated with Electroconvulsive Therapy: A Pediatric Case Series and Treatment Guidelines. Mischel NA, Mooneyham GC, Lau C, Van Mater H, Weiner RD. (2020) Psychosomatics. PMID: 31980211.

Psychiatric Symptoms in Pediatric Patients with Myelin-Oligodendrocyte-Glycoprotein-Immunoglobulin G-Antibody Positive Autoimmune Encephalitis: A Case Series. Powers JH, Mooneyham GC. (2020) Psychosomatics. PMID: 31980213.

Evaluation of Diagnostic Criteria for Hashimoto Encephalopathy Among Children and Adolescents. Adams AV, Mooneyham GC, Van Mater H, Gallentine W. (2020) Pediatr Neurol. PMID: 32173161.

Autoimmune Brain Disorders: Beyond the Basics. Mooneyham GC, Namerow L, Cohen D, Stolte E, Young K,Wells E, Van Mater H. (2019) Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

A Clinical Overview for the Practicing Child Psychiatrist. Mooneyham GC, Gallentine W, Van Mater H. Evaluation and Management of Autoimmune Encephalitis: (2018) Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. PMID: 29157501.