Paul A. Newhouse, M.D.
Professor of Psychiatry, Pharmacology, and Medicine
Director, Center for Cognitive Medicine
Department of Psychiatry
Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

Dr. Newhouse is the  Director of the Center for Cognitive Medicine in the Department of Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is also Jim Turner Professor of Cognitive Disorders at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and Professor of Psychiatry, Pharmacology, and Medicine.

Dr. Newhouse received his undergraduate education at Kansas State University, attended medical school at Loyola University, Stritch School of Medicine, and completed his residency training in psychiatry at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. He completed a fellowship in Geriatric Psychopharmacology at the National Institute of Mental Health.

Dr. Newhouse's research has focused on central nicotinic mechanisms in degenerative brain disorders and the role of nicotinic receptor systems in normal and disordered cognitive functioning in humans. He has also focused attention on the development of novel nicotinic agents for clinical use.  Another major focus includes studying the interaction of estrogen and central cholinergic, catecholaminergic, and serotonergic systems in relation to cognitive and emotional aging in the elderly and novel pharmacologic-imaging methodologies. Other interests include treatment of depression and behavioral disturbances in the elderly, and development of effective novel agents for the treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders of the elderly.

He is a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in both General Psychiatry and Geriatric Psychiatry and in 2002 was awarded the American Psychiatric Association Profiles in Courage award. Dr. Newhouse serves as a frequent consultant to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in the United States and abroad on central nervous system drug development, clinical trial design for dementia and depression, and clinical nicotinic pharmacology. He has served on and has chaired numerous NIH grant review committees, and is an editorial board member and frequent reviewer for scientific journals for manuscripts on depression, dementia and cognitive neuroscience.



Warren D. Taylor, M.D.
Director, Mood Disorders Program
Psychiatry Department
Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Researcher, Center for Cognitive Medicine

Dr. Taylor comes to the Center for Cognitive Medicine from Duke University in Durham, NC where he was Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Senior Fellow in the Center for the Study of Aging and Human Development. Dr. Taylor completed his psychiatric residency, as well as a geriatric fellowship at Duke.

Dr. Taylor is nationally recognized as a researcher in geriatric psychiatry and for his work in the study of depression in the elderly. Among other approaches, he uses neuroimaging to further understand the unique aspects of mood disorders in the elderly.

In addition to his role in the Center for Cognitive Medicine, he will assume a leadership role in the psychiatry department as the Director of the Mood Disorders Program.



Esther Eisenberg, M.D., M.P.H.
Reproductive Endocrinologist
Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

Dr. Eisenberg is a reproductive endocrinologist and Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee. She received her medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, residency training in obstetrics and gynecology at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, fellowship training in reproductive endocrinology and infertility at Pennsylvania Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia. She joined the faculty of Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in 1992.  In 2000 she completed a Masters of Public Health at Vanderbilt University with an emphasis in epidemiology.

Dr. Eisenberg has written numerous articles on menopause, infertility and hormonal problems in women, and has co-authored a book, Hysterectomy: Exploring Your Options, published by the Johns Hopkins Press in 2003. Currently, she serves on the Editorial Board of Fertility and Sterility, and is a member of the Committee on Gynecologic Practice of the American College of Obstetrician and Gynecologists. Her areas of expertise are hormonal problems in women including menopause and its consequences, polycystic ovarian syndrome, endometriosis and infertility.



Joon Hyuk Park, M.D., Ph.D.
Visiting Associate Professor
Vanderbilt Center for Cognitive Medicine
Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

Dr. Park came to the Center for Cognitive Medicine (CCM) in July 2014 on a sabbatical to Vanderbilt as a visiting professor. He is a geriatric psychiatrist in the Department of Psychiatry at Jeju National University College of Medicine in South Korea, as well as an Associate Professor there. His research base started from the epidemiology of geriatric psychiatry and his research interests include depression in dementia, vascular dementia, and a longitudinal cohort study on cognitive aging and dementia. Dr. Park came to Vanderbilt to expand his research fields and to study the various advanced methodologies in cognitive medicine and geriatric depression. He, his wife, and young daughter look forward to enjoying time in Nashville.



Neil Woodward, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Psychiatry
Assistant Professor of Psychology
Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Woodward Lab:

Dr. Woodward's research focuses on understanding the neural basis of schizophrenia and related psychotic disorders. His lab uses a variety of approaches, including cognitive psychology, neuroimaging, and neuropsychological methods. A particular area of interest is brain connectivity and how large-scale brain networks are affected in psychiatric illnesses. 

Dr. Woodward's background includes training in neuroimaging and clinical psychology, primarily neoropsychological assessment. As well, he is licensed as a clinical psychologist in the state of Tennessee.



Lilia Zurkovsky, Ph.D.
Visiting Research Fellow

Lilly received her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, studying estrogen's effects on cognition in rodent models of menopause. Lilly is intrigued by how and why younger and older brains solve problems in different manners and hopes to understand how the brain's plasticity can be harnessed to optimize cognition in middle-age and later. In particular, Lilly is interested in striatum-sensitive cognition and how age-related changes in estrogen and acetylcholine affect habit formation and skill learning.   



Sally R. Ross, M.S.
Program Coordinator
(615) 875-0955

Sally relocated to Vanderbilt University and Nashville from the University of Vermont on beautiful Lake Champlain in Burlington. She worked with Dr. Newhouse since 1998 as the Research Communications Specialist at UVM’s Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit, and joined him as the Program Coordinator at the Center for Cognitive Medicine (CCM) at Vanderbilt. An important aspect of Sally’s position is to recruit participants for research studies, a role she has enjoyed for many years.



T. Dean Holbert, B.A.
Clinical Trials Associate II
(615) 322-1030

Dean comes to the CCM from Duke University in Durham, N.C. As a research coordinator, he has worked on various studies focusing on therapeutic foster care, psychiatric advance directives, and late-life depression. He received his B.A. in Sociolology from the University of North Carolina-Asheville.



Savannah Boyd, B.S.
Research Assistant I
(615) 936-0231

Savannah came to Nashville from Athens, Georgia where she received her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Georgia. Her undergraduate research focused on the dynamics of self-control in close relationships. She hopes to build on her skills and knowledge in order to enter a Ph.D. program in the coming years.


medium_Brian photo2-100x100.png

Brian D. Boyd, B.S.

Brian recently relocated to Nashville from North Carolina to join the CCM. He previously worked in the neuroimaging lab at Duke University supporting the research of several investigators, including Dr. Warren Taylor. Brian contributes to the CCM with his knowledge of coding and databases, as well as image processing and analysis. At Vanderbilt, he collaborates with a team from several departments to maintain a shared XNAT system for imaging processing and archiving.

Brian received a B.S. in Mathematical Sciences from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2001. In his spare time, he is enjoying getting to know Nashville with his wife, two daughters, and three dogs.



Kimberly Albert, B.S.
Graduate Student-Research Assistant
(615) 327-7030

Kim has been a member of the Newhouse lab since 2009. Her scientific interests include brain networks involved in cognitive and emotional processes, and the effects of hormones and mood states on these systems. Kim received her BS in Neuroscience from Johns Hopkins University, and is a PhD candidate in the University of Vermont Neuroscience Graduate Program.



Asante R. Kamkwalala, B.S.
Graduate Student-Research Assistant
(615) 322-2082 

Asante has been a member of the Center for Cognitive Medicine since January 2011. Her scientific interest focuses on pathological (acquired or genetic) models of accelerated cognitive aging. She received her B.S. in Neuroscience from Emory University, and is currently a seconnd-year graduate student at the Vanderbilt Brain Institute.



Jennifer N. Vega, B.S.
Ph.D. Candidate, Cognitive & Systems Neuroscience
J.B. Marshall Clinical Scholar

Jennifer has been a member of the CCM since January 2014. Her scientific interest focuses on how chemotherapy for breast cancer affects cognition, brain function, and brain anatomy. She received a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Arizona, and is currently a Ph.D. student in Vandernilt's Cognitive & Systems Neuroscience program.



Shirin Pulous, B.S.
Administrative Assistant
(615) 936-0928

Shirin joined the CCM in 2013. As the Administrative Assistant to Dr. Newhouse, Shirin handles, among other tasks, his appointments & travel, as well as the travel arrangements for other staff and graduate students in the lab. She is very instrumental in organizing schedules for visiting faculty members. In her new role at CCM she is excited to expand her knowledge, skills, and experience. Shirin has a B.S. degree in Mathematics.