Nina Kraguljac

Nina Kraguljac, MD, MA

Nina Kraguljac, MD, MA, is a tenured Professor and Vice Chair for Strategy and Innovation in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health. Dr. Kraguljac received her MD degree at the Paracelsus Medical University in Salzburg, Austria and a Masters’ degree in Psychology at the Paris Lodron University in Salzburg, Austria. She has completed her general psychiatry residency and research track training at the University of Alabama at Birmingham where she later joined the faculty and reinvigorated the Psychiatry Resident Research Track.

Executive Committee


K. Luan Phan, MD

K. Luan Phan, MD, is the Charles F. Sinsabaugh Chair in Psychiatry and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health. Dr. Phan received his medical degree from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and completed his psychiatry residency and research track training at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinics at the University of Pittsburgh and at the University of Michigan Hospitals and Clinics. Prior to joining The Ohio State University, Dr. Phan directed the psychiatry resident research track at the University of Chicago at Illinois from 2013-2019.
Scott Langenecker

Scott Langenecker, PhD

Scott Langenecker, PhD, is a tenured Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health and Vice Chair for Research. He completed his PhD in clinical Psychology at the Marquette University, a clinical internship at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and a postdoctoral fellowship in Clinical and Research Neuropsychology at the University of Michigan Medical Center. He has supervised numerous clinical and research trainees at all levels of training, including several Research Track Residents at the University of Michigan.

Tamar Gur, MD/PhD

Tamar Gur, MD/PhD, is a tenured Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health. Dr. Gur received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Brown University. She then went on to complete both her MD and PhD as part of the NIH-Funded MSTP program at the University of Pennsylvania. She completed her residency training in Psychiatry at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. She now serves as the Associate Director of the OSU Medical Scientist Training Program and as the Faculty Director for the ASPIRE Program.
Mary Fristad

Mary Fristad, PhD

Mary Fristad, PhD, is the Director of Academic Affairs and Research Development in the Division of Child & Family Psychiatry and Big Lots Behavioral Health Services at Nationwide Children's Hospital and Emerita Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health, Psychology, and Nutrition at the Ohio State University. She received her doctorate from the University of Kansas after completing her clinical internship at Brown University. At Nationwide Children's Hospital, Dr. Fristad fosters faculty development, research initiatives, quality improvement projects, and training in mood disorders.

Research track mentors

Justin Baker

Justin C. Baker, PhD, ABPP

  • Dr. Baker is Clinical Director for the Suicide and Trauma Reduction Initiative for Veterans (STRIVE). He is a military veteran focused on improving interventions for posttraumatic stress disorder and suicide among military service members and veterans. This includes development of interventions for the early identification of elevated suicide risk in military and civilian populations, implementing peer mentoring public health models of suicide prevention, and improving suicide prevention implementation efforts for broadest dissemination of evidence-based interventions.

Ruth Barrientos, PhD

  • Dr. Barrientos’ laboratory examines the neuroimmune phenotype of the aging brain and the underlying mechanisms and signaling pathways involved with each of these “everyday” insults. The main goal of Dr. Barrientos’ research is to develop effective interventions to not only prevent, but to also reverse the aging-associated precipitous memory declines produced by these neuroinflammatory triggers.
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Melanie Bozzay, PhD

  • Dr. Bozzay uses experimental (i.e., laboratory and ambulatory tasks), psychophysiological (i.e., EEG/ERP), and intensive longitudinal assessment (i.e., ecological momentary assessment, actigraphy, digital phenotyping) methods to characterize risk processes underlying suicide and violence. She is particularly interested in identifying short-term risk markers of these high-impact behaviors that may be viable targets for intervention and prevention strategies.
Nick Breitborde

Nick Breitborde, PhD, ABPP

  • Dr. Breitborde is a health services researcher who work focuses on the development, delivery, and dissemination of novel and evidence-based treatments for individuals with psychosis disorders with a particular focus on individuals with first-episode psychosis and those at clinically-high risk for developing a psychotic disorder. Current research in lab examines the implementation and evaluation of learning health networks, costs and reimbursement strategies for psychosis care, and development of strategies to prevent the onset of psychosis disorders.
Craig Bryan

Craig J. Bryan, PsyD, ABPP

  • The Suicide and Trauma Reduction Initiative for Veterans (STRIVE) is one of the nation’s leaders for developing and testing treatments and interventions to prevent suicide and promote recovery from PTSD. STRIVE researchers aim to improve the effectiveness of existing treatments and develop novel strategies that can improve clinical outcomes and quality of life for this population. Several innovations pioneered by STRIVE researchers include the development and validation of ultra-brief treatment formats for veterans with PTSD (i.e., within two weeks), virtual/telehealth-based treatment formats, digital therapeutics (i.e., smartphone-based interventions), and optimal combinations of psychotherapeutic and somatic treatments. To achieve these aims, STRIVE researchers use unique combinations of complementary methodologies including randomized clinical trials, ecological momentary assessment (EMA), passive sensing with wearable technologies, psychophysiological assessment, neuroimaging, and advanced computational methods.

Lisa Christian, PhD

  • Dr. Christian’s Stress, Behavioral Immunology, and Health Disparities Lab examines how exposures to chronic stress, mood disorders, anxiety, and sleep disturbance interact in a bi-directional manner with the immune and neuroendocrine system to affect physical and mental health. Studies use psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) research approaches to examine how stress “gets under the skin.” The goal is to address health disparities and inform behavioral interventions by identifying key pathways by which stress affects health.

Jay Fournier, PhD

  • Dr. Fournier’s research program focuses on identifying patient characteristics that are associated with differential response to treatments for depression and related disorders. In addition, his work investigates the neural and behavioral mechanisms through which those characteristics lead to better (or worse) clinical and functional outcomes. Dr. Fournier’s research bridges work in clinical interventions, mood disorders, personality, and neuroscience with the aim of developing more effective treatment strategies that can be tailored to the unique needs of individual patients.
Bridget Freisthler

Bridget Freisthler, PhD

  • Dr. Freisthler focuses on how situation, social, and location characteristics affect the use of child abuse and neglect. The goal is to design, implement, and evaluate intervention strategies that reduce substance misuse, child abuse, and neglect. This work falls under categories: (1) basic science to understand how context affects both parenting and substance misuse; (2) how features of environments or microcontexts can be modified to reduce or prevent child maltreatment and substance misuse and (3) studying the effects of interventions designed to reduce child abuse and neglect and/or substance misuse.

Stephanie M. Gorka, PhD

  • Dr. Gorka is the Director of the Gorka Risk, Resilience, and Recovery Lab. Her research aims to apply innovative methods at the intersection of stress, anxiety, and substance use to improve personalized approaches to psychiatric treatment development, particularly among adolescents and young adults. She is engaged in 2 lines of work: (1) longitudinal studies aimed at understanding risk and resilience trajectories in high-risk youth, and (2) randomized clinical trials testing mechanisms and predictors of psychosocial and pharmacological treatments.
Tamar Gur, MD, PhD

Tamar Gur, MD, PhD

  • Dr. Gur's laboratory seeks to understand the contribution of maternal mental illness to the development in psychiatric outcomes in the offspring. They use an interdisciplinary approach to address the mechanisms of transgenerational transmission of psychiatric illness, including molecular, biochemical, epigenetic and behavioral methods.
Susan Havercamp

Susan Havercamp, PhD

  • Dr. Havercamp's research focuses on physical and mental health issues in people with disabilities. She provides disability training for health care providers and serves as the disability issue representative to the Group on Diversity and Inclusion at the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). Dr. Havercamp directs a program to increase the state’s capacity to promote health, prevent chronic disease and improve emergency preparedness and quality of life for Ohioans with disabilities.
Kristen Hoskinson

Kristen R. Hoskinson, PhD

  • Dr. Hoskinson’s lab integrates multimodal neuroimaging, neuropsychological testing, and behavioral and emotional assessment to examine how brain structure and function contribute to cognitive and mental health outcomes in youth with chronic illness or injury that impacts the central nervous system. Current studies include children and adolescents with pediatric cancer and brain tumor, traumatic brain injury, and severe COVID-19 manifestations as they relate to anxiety, depression, and behavioral disorders.
Jennifer Hughes, MD

Jennifer L. Hughes, PhD, MPH

  • Dr. Hughes’s research explores the efficacy and effectiveness of psychosocial treatments for addressing youth suicide, the prevention and treatment of youth depression, and building resilience. She specializes in integrating theory and skills from cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, and family-based cognitive behavioral therapy into brief interventions for crisis, with a focus on deployment and implementation.
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Jacek Kolacz, PhD

  • Dr. Kolacz studies the autonomic nervous system’s coordination of brain-body functions, and its contribution to psychopathology and disease across the lifespan. His lab uses wearable sensors, longitudinal modeling, and neurophysiologically-informed assessment tools to study mechanisms of neuromodulation and psychotherapy treatments.
Lauren Khazem, PhD

Lauren Khazem, PhD

  • Dr. Khazem’s research is focused on identifying unique drivers of suicide risk in the disability community, Veterans, and military personnel. She integrates these findings in clinical research with the goal of improving the efficacy, accessibility, and reach of suicide prevention assessments and interventions for these populations.
Scott Langenecker

Scott Langenecker, PhD

  • Dr. Langenecker’s research addresses the neurobiological features of mood disorders, in relation to onset, course, responsivity to treatment, likelihood of attrition, likelihood of recurrence, risk for suicide, impact of childhood adversity, buffering affects of family cohesion, and risk for disability.

Aubrey Moe, PhD

  • Dr. Moe’s research focuses on the integration multimodal data to understand the brain-behavior mechanisms that contribute to social difficulties among individuals living with psychosis, with a specific emphasis on social cognition. She uses a variety of methods, including neuroimaging, clinical assessment, and ambulatory assessment in real-world settings (ecological momentary assessment).
Eric Nelson

Eric Nelson, PhD

  • Dr. Nelsons lab focuses on the intersection of adolescent brain development and mental health. We use advanced neuroimaging methods and clinical assessment tools to probe brain development in a number of psychiatric and other neurologically impacted populations. Ongoing studies focus on anxiety, depression, psychosis, suicidal and transgender youth. Other topics of interest include effects of preterm birth, demyelinating syndromes, and neural mechanisms of pain processing in children.
Kinh Luan Phan, MD

K. Luan Phan, MD

  • Dr. Phan and his research team understands that emotions have a powerful role in tuning our perception, imbuing our experience, guiding our decisions, and shaping our actions. As such, they believe that anxiety, fear, depression and addiction can be understood along dimensions of emotion and its regulation that evolve over the lifespan and fluctuate with stress. They use neuroscience measures and methods to study the emotional brain and its readouts in the laboratory and the real world, and marry this approach with psychopharmacology, neuromodulation and intervention trials. The team primarily uses magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, DTI, sMRI), electroencephalography (EEG) of event-related potentials (ERP), and other psychophysiological tools to assess brain circuit function as they relate to emotion, affect regulation and motivation. Their work seeks to better understand the neuropathophysiology and course of psychopathology, and to use that understanding to innovate strategies to prevent and treat more patients better and faster and keep them well for longer periods of time.

Leah Pyter, PhD

  • She an integrative biologist with a PhD in behavioral neuroscience whose research focuses on how neuro-immune communication contributes to behavioral side effects of chemotherapy with the overall mission of improving the quality of life and health of cancer patients and survivors. She combines rodent modeling approaches with clinical research in breast cancer patients.
Donna Ruch

Donna Ruch, PhD

  • Dr. Ruch’s research focuses on mental health and related healthcare disparities, the epidemiology of youth suicide and suicidal behavior, and big data analytics to inform targeted suicide prevention strategies. Her specific emphasis is on identifying unique individual and system level risk and protective factors associated with suicidal behavior in vulnerable and underserved youth involved with public child-serving systems (juvenile justice, child welfare, immigration, Medicaid).
Ivy Tso

Ivy Tso, PhD

  • Dr. Tso’s research program investigates the cognitive and neural bases of social and affective dysfunctions in psychopathology, particularly schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and related disorders. She uses psychophysics, brain mapping (EEG, fMRI), non-invasive brain stimulation (TMS, tECS), and mathematical/computational modeling to elucidate brain mechanisms and to identify biobehavioral markers and novel treatment targets. The goal of her research is to develop neuroscience-based interventions to improve patients’ social functioning and quality of life.

Jessica Turner, PhD

  • Her research program uses multiple types of neuroimaging in psychiatric populations to improve understanding of the structural and functional circuitry underlying mental illness and health. The combination of imaging, genetics, symptoms and cognitive measures in multivariate analyses is aimed at identifying patterns of dysfunction across the brain that can be targeted for improved treatment.

Lei Wang, PhD

  • Dr. Wang focuses on developing neuroimaging biomarkers for neuropsychiatric disorders ranging from psychosis and dementia to pediatric HIV and cancer-treatment related cognitive dysfunction. He uses computational anatomy tools to develop these biomarkers, bridging mathematics, engineering and clinical neuroscience. He is interested in contributing to the building of big data and open science infrastructure for neuroimaging research. This includes data discovery, data sharing, and reproducibility science.

Heather Wastler, PhD

  • Her research leverages mobile based technology (ecological momentary assessment and passive sensing) to better understand factors that contribute to suicidal ideation in real time. She has two primary areas of focus: 1) understanding the mechanisms that lead to acute changes in suicidal ideation among individuals in the early course of psychotic disorders (i.e. individuals at risk for psychosis and/or individuals experiencing a first-episode of psychosis) and 2) understanding the basic phenomenology of suicidal ideation and pathways to suicidal behavior.