Marcia H. Ratner, PhD, DABT


Project Manager

Department of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics

Doctorate: Boston University School of Medicine

Fellowship: Boston University School of Medicine

Board Certification: Diplomate American Board of Toxicology


Dr. Marcia Ratner earned her bachelors degree in Psychology from Boston University.  While an undergraduate at BU, she also completed her pre-medical requirements, made the Dean’s list, and was a member of Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology.  She went on to earn her doctoral degree in Behavioral Neuroscience from the Boston University School of Medicine where she trained in the Department of Neurology under the supervision of Drs. Robert G. Feldman and Raymon Durso. She subsequently completed a three year NIH/NIA Post-Doctoral Fellowship in the Biochemistry of Aging at the BUSM Department Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics under the guidance of Dr. David H. Farb. Dr. Ratner’s education and training provide her with genuine interdisciplinary translational research expertise in preclinical and clinical neuroscience. Dr. Ratner is a member of several professional medical societies that reflect upon her expertise in clinical research including the American Academy of NeurologyAmerican Psychological Association, and the American Academy of Clinical Toxicology.  She serves as a reviewer for several professional toxicology and medical journals and is registered with Publons.

Dr. Ratner is also a Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology. She is an active member of several societies of professional toxicologists including the: Society of Toxicology, American Academy of Clinical ToxicologyAmerican Society for Cellular and Computational Toxicology, and International Neurotoxicology Association.  Dr. Ratner has served as a scientific advisor to the Workplace Safety Insurance Board of Ontario, Canada.  Dr. Ratner’s contributions to the field of occupational and environmental neurotoxicology are recognized in the popular book “Poisoned: How a Crime-Busting Prosecutor Turned His Medical Mystery into a Crusade for Environmental Victims“.

Dr. Ratner’s research is focused on interdisciplinary investigations looking at the effects of neurotoxicants and drugs on the progression and onset of age-related neurodegenerative diseases associated with learning and memory deficits such as Alzheimer’s disease and age-related mild cognitive impairment.  She currently works with the Department Chairman, Dr. David Farb, in the Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology where she is using basic behavioral and in vivo electrophysiological techniques in her preclinical studies of these relationships in wild type and transgenic rat models of age-related neurodegenerative disease.

As the Project Manager of the Department and a Board Certified Toxicologist, Dr. Ratner oversees compliance with safety and regulatory policies. Dr. Ratner is a former member of the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) and she has served as a departmental representative to the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).  She is also a recipient of the prestigious Marquis Who’s Who Lifetime Achievement Award for her work as a Project Manager. Dr. Ratner is available to provide assistance to all departmental faculty, students and research staff with their IACUC protocol submissions and associated training and compliance issues.

In addition to her research and administrative duties within the Department of Pharmacology, Dr. Ratner is a regular lecturer in the graduate program in Behavioral Neurosciences; she is available to serve as a committee member or mentor to the doctoral students from this program.  She also teaches an undergraduate course in Forensic Toxicology (BT 450) offered through the Biomedical Laboratory and Clinical Sciences Program which prepares students for careers in the fields of biotechnology and clinical research.  Dr. Ratner regularly serves as a mentor to undergraduate students enrolled in Bioscience Academy. The Bioscience Academy is a BU-based federally funded program administered through Metropolitan College and the School of Medicine. One of Dr. Ratner’s former Bioscience Academy students, Zainab Mahmod, was awarded the Paul Queenan Memorial Award for academic excellence. She also serves as a grant reviewer for Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology.    Highly qualified students from these programs are invited to seek internship opportunities under her supervision in the Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology

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