Professor of Psychiatry, University of California San Diego
Dr. Powell received her undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her PhD in Psychobiology from the University of Florida with support from an NIMH Predoctoral NRSA fellowship. She completed her postdoctoral training in Psychopharmacology in the UCSD Psychiatry Department. Dr. Powell was appointed an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry in 2007 and is currently a Professor in the Department. Dr. Powell is also a Research Scientist at the San Diego VA Healthcare System and the Associate Director of the Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC). She has been the principal investigator on research awards from NIMH, NIEHS, and NARSAD.
Dr. Powell’s research broadly involves preclinical studies of neuropsychiatric disease with specific focus on behaviors and manipulations relevant to schizophrenia. She has been primarily studying the effects of early developmental manipulations on behavioral and neurobiological measures in rodents. Most recently, she has studied the effects of adolescent social isolation, adolescent oxidative stress, and prenatal immune activation to better understand developmental risk factors associated with neuropsychiatric disorders. Current projects in her laboratory include studies to determine the effects of environmental exposures and their combination with genetic susceptibility on genome-wide DNA methylation and behavior in mice. Additionally, she also studies the behavioral effects of serotonergic and glutamatergic hallucinogens in rodents as model psychosis to aid in the development of novel therapeutics.