NeuroPlasticity Research in Support of Mental Health

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NeuroPRSMH member awarded the prestigious and highly competitive McKnight Land-Grant Professorship

Dr. Sarah Heilbronner

Assistant Professor in the Department of Neuroscience and NeuroPRSMH collaborator, Sarah Heilbronner, PhD, was recently named a McKnight Land-Grant Professor. The goal of the McKnight Land-Grant Professorship Program is to advance the careers of assistant professors at a crucial point in their professional lives. The designation of "McKnight Land-Grant Professor" is held by recipients for a two-year period.

Dr. Heilbronner was recognized for her work related to "Building a Wiring Diagram of the Brain." Cells in the brain connect and communicate with each other in complex and fascinating patterns. Dr. Heilbronner’s research aims to uncover these patterns, especially for parts of the brain that are demonstrably different in psychiatric disorders. Her research bridges nonhuman animal models and humans, allowing us to make inferences about neural mechanisms in humans and more effectively model brain disorders in animals.

NeuroPRSMH collaborator wins prestigious award

Congratulations to Alik Widge, MD, PhD, who was recently selected by the Society of Biological Psychiatry as the recipient of the Society’s 2021 A.E. Bennett Award for Clinical/Translational Research. This prestigious award recognizes superb international research in biological psychiatry by young investigators as well as the crucial contributions of those whose efforts have had a very visible and public impact on both the field and the people suffering from mental illness. The award will be presented to Dr. Widge virtually during the Society’s Annual Scientific Convention & Meeting, April 29 – May 1, 2021.

BREAKING NEWS: NeuroPRSMH leaders Dr. David Redish and Dr. Sophia Vinogradov awarded $15M NIMH Conte Center Grant. Read more

Since 2016, the University of Minnesota has had a thriving, trans-disciplinary working group of faculty members from the departments of Psychiatry, Neuroscience, Psychology, Biomedical Engineering, the Institute for Health Informatics, and Philosophy of Science. We have been collaborating on questions related to neuroplasticity, computational psychiatry, and the neuroscience of innovative treatment approaches for psychiatric illness.

More recently, the Center for NeuroPlasticity Research in Support of Mental Health, or NeuroPRSMH, was created to formalize our multi-disciplinary collaboration. Our goal is to address research questions related to neuroplasticity in mental health and mental illness, computational psychiatry, the neuroscience of innovative treatment approaches for psychiatric illness, and ultimately, to translate those findings into clinical practice.

“It’s a great place to get ideas,” said NeuroPRSMH faculty member Alik Widge, PhD, MD. “I know my lab’s general direction regarding modifying networks in the brain, but I don’t always know what the best target is or how to measure how good that target is. Our NeuroPRSMH discussions help me get great ideas about how to go down that path.”

Center Structure

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NeuroPRSMH is led by

Dr. Sophia Vinogradov, MD
Head and Professor
Department of Psychiatry


Dr. A. David Redish, PhD
Distinguished McKnight University Professor
Department of Neuroscience


For a list of current members, see List of Members.

Contact information

For additional information, contact Song Burkhart (