Myrna Weissman, PhD

Diane Goldman Kemper Family Professor & Chief of the Division of Epidemiology (in Psychiatry)


Dr. Weissman is Chief of the Division of Epidemiology at New York State Psychiatric Institute (NYSPI). Her current research is on understanding the rates and risks of mood and anxiety disorders using methods of epidemiology, genetics, neuroimaging, and the application of these findings to develop and test empirically based treatments and prevention intervention. Dr. Weissman also directs three major studies: 1) a 3-generation study of families at high and low risk for depression who have been studied clinically for up to 25 years and who are participating in genetic and imaging studies; 2) a multi-center study to determine the impact of maternal remission from depression on offspring; 3) a study of psychiatric disorders in a poor minority patient population in primary care. She also participates in several studies of the genetics of mood and anxiety disorder.

In collaboration with her late husband, Gerald Klerman, Dr. Weissman developed and tested interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT).  Her book outlining the method has been translated into five languages, and based on her work an international society of researchers and clinicians using IPT was formed. Dr. Weissman's current interest related to IPT is in bringing psychiatric epidemiology closer to translational studies in the neurosciences and genetics.