Our people - Addiction and Mental Health
Prof Murat Yücel gained a PhD combined with specialist training in Clinical Neuropsychology in 2001 at La Trobe University. As well as leading the Addiction and Mental Health research program, he is the Founding Director of BrainPark, and Co-Director of the Brain and Mental Health (BMH) Research Hub. He is an NHMRC Principal Research Fellow and holds the David Winston Turner Chair in Addiction and Mental Health Research.
Over two decades, Murat has worked at the interface between clinical neuropsychology, psychiatry, neuroscience and technology. His group adopts a 'trans-diagnostic' approach to investigate whether the initiation and maintenance of substance and behavioural addictions, as well as obsessive-compulsive disorder, are underpinned by overlapping cognitive and motivational tendencies, and brain substrates (e.g., those related to impulsivity and compulsivity). His group are also combining lifestyle, psychological and technology-based interventions (such as physical exercise, mediation, yoga, virtual reality, cognitive training, and gentle brain stimulation) to enhance therapeutic outcomes and create accessible treatments that can be self-administered.
In 2015, 2017 and 2018, Murat was named in the Thompson Reuters “Most Highly Cited” authors reflecting his standing in the top 1% of the world’s most influential scientific minds over a 10-year period, and illustrating his group’s exceptional and enduring impact on a world stage.
Program Deputy Lead
Professor Antonio Verdejo-Garcia has a PhD in Psychology (University of Granada, 2006), and a Masters in Psychological and Biomedical Aspects of Health and Illness (University of Granada, 2002). He previously held a post-doctoral fellowship in the Neuroscience Program of the IMIM-Hospital del Mar (Barcelona Biomedical Research Park), where he developed strategic research collaborations in the fields of genetics, neuropharmacology and functional neuroimaging. Currently Antonio’s research focuses on the cognitive and neural mechanisms underpinning executive control and decision-making, and their implications for addiction and obesity.
Other Key Team Members
Dr Rico Lee
Dr Lucy Albertella
Dr Naomi Kakoschke