Psychiatry Research Center
Christina P. C. Borba, PhD, MPH
Director of Research
About Us OVERVIEW VIDEO
The Psychiatry Research Center provides research support, guidance and resources to all department faculty engaged in psychiatric and interdisciplinary research. The Center’s research initiatives encompass a variety of specialties, including maternal and child mental health, serious mental illnesses, psychotic disorders, veterans’ health and PTSD, addictions, Alzheimer’s disease and refugee health. We have expertise in a range of research methodologies including basic science, clinical trials, qualitative and mixed-methods research, epidemiologic and epigenetic research, community-based participatory research and biobanking.
Through our research, we advance and deepen our understanding of psychiatric illnesses in order to foster the development of more effective prevention, diagnostic, and treatment strategies for a wide range of disorders. We recognize the essential, bidirectional relationship between research and clinical care. Our research provides an evidence-base for the development of successful clinical care and our clinical experiences guide our research interests and priorities.
A Global Emphasis
Our work is also strongly influenced by our diverse patient population, of which 59 percent are from underserved populations and 31 percent do not speak English as a primary language. We apply a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the complex mental health needs of our patients, in both global and local contexts. We are engaged in research projects in more than 15 countries in Africa, Asia, South America and the Middle East. In our diverse local community, our researchers explore the myriad of intersections of culture and mental health. Through this research, we hope to build a deeper understanding of many historically marginalized and understudied populations in order to provide more effective and accessible care. Please visit Global and Local Center for Mental Health Disparities for more information.
Student and Resident Opportunities
As a department housed within the BU School of Medicine, located on the BU Medical Campus we are dedicated to providing research training and mentorship opportunities for our psychiatry residents, medical students, public health and other graduate students, and undergraduates. 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. By fostering collaborations between our students and faculty, we strengthen our current research portfolio, while building the next generation of physician-scientists ready to take on the mental health challenges of our global community.
The PROVEn Registry (Psychiatric Research Opportunities for Volunteer Enrollment) is a registry of individuals with diverse psychiatric conditions who have expressed interest in taking part in research activities at the Boston University Medical Campus. The PROVEn was created as a mechanism to ensure that our patients have access to research participation opportunities and to support our researchers’ ability to identify individuals who may be interested in enrolling in their research initiatives. PROVEn registry participants complete a brief questionnaire about basic health and mental health information that our researchers use to identify those individuals who may be eligible for and interested in participating in studies.