Programs & Research


Our Mission

We seek to advance and deepen our understanding of psychiatric illnesses, so as to facilitate the development of more effective diagnostic, treatment, and prevention strategies for a diverse range of disorders.

Our History

The Psychiatry Research Center, previously the Clinical Studies Unit, was established  in 1996. Today, the department is building research capacity to support a wide array of research questions, aiming to  inform and improve patient care.

About Us

The Department of Psychiatry at Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine is composed of experienced researchers and clinicians at the forefront of psychiatric research. Through translational research, our mission is to unveil the mechanisms underlying psychiatric disorders to improve diagnosis, intervention, prevention, and treatment within our department.

The Department of Psychiatry’s research initiatives encompass a variety of specialties, from maternal and newborn mental health to veteran’s health and PTSD. We apply a multidisciplinary approach to understanding mental health on both local and global scales. On the local scale, we engage the BMC patient community in participatory research to discover the mental health architecture of our surrounding Boston area. At the global level, our newly-established Global & Local Center for Mental Health Disparities carries our knowledge to countries in Africa, Asia, South America, and the Middle East to uncover sociocultural factors in the diagnosis and experience of psychiatric illness, in partnership with the Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Global Psychiatry.

As a department housed within the BU School of Medicine, our goal is to engage in academia and provide mentorship opportunities for our medical residents, public health graduate students, and undergraduate students. In congruence with the medical school curriculum, we believe in training well-rounded clinicians who continually engage in research to better understand their patient population and inform their practice. We also partner with the Boston University School of Public Health, where several graduate students complete coursework under the protocols of the Department of Psychiatry research staff. At the undergraduate level, we believe in introducing passionate and motivated students to careers in research and mental health.

Our department is inclusive and takes pride in the diversity of its research protocols, engaging in both industry and investigator-initiated studies. The BUMC Department of Psychiatry regularly collaborates with top-level academic, medical, and federal institutions such as Montana State University, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the National Institute of Health.

Please visit the additional links on this page to learn more about our research programs and opportunities for both collaboration and participation in our current research studies.

How to Get Involved

Contact for Clinicians & Faculty:

Dr. Christina Borba
Director of Research
T: 617.414.1915
F: 617.414.1910

Contact for Patients:

Claire Oppenheim
Research Program Manager
T: 617.414.1911
F: 617.414.1910