Research Overview

A Comprehensive Program for the Chronically Mentally Ill

The S.T.A.R. Program, a division of the Bronx VA Mental Health Patient Care Center (MH-PCC) and The Mount Sinai Health System outpatient departments, provides comprehensive psychiatric care to patients suffering from schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, and other primary psychotic disorders. The program focuses on patients who require active treatment and support for their integration in the community. The program provides services addressing a broad spectrum of psychiatric, medical, and psychosocial needs of patients. A particular goal of the program is to conduct research with the goal of improving the treatment and outcome of schizophrenia.

Fellowship Goals

  • To develop clinical skills in the multi-disciplinary care of patients with schizophrenia.
  • To introduce concepts in community integration for schizophrenic patients.
  • To promote research in the etiology, pathophysiology, and treatment of schizophrenia.

Current STAR Research Studies

Conte Center
The Conte Center for Neuroscience of Mental Disorders was established by the NIMH.  Neuroscientists and clinicians are carrying out research to try to understand the neuropathology of schizophrenia with a focus on glial cells. Oppurtunities for research include imaging (MRI, fMRI, MRS, PET and DTI), neuropathology, genetics, translational models, molecular biology, etc.  Conte will follow patients with schizophrenia over time to better understand the course of the disease and its implications, with the goal to improve diagnosis, management, and outcome.

Psycho-pharmacological treatment studies
These trials focus on the GABAergic glutaminergic and noradrenergic systems and their relation to negative symptoms and cognitive deficits associated with schizophrenia.  These augmentation studies test the possibility of improving negative symptoms and cognitive abilities in patients with schizophrenia by adding specific augmenting agents to preexisting antipsychotic treatment.

Psycho-pharmacological treatment studies
With novel antipsychotic agents, these studies test the ability of new medications to ameliorate psychotic symptoms both positive and negative symptoms as well as cognitive dysfunction in patients with schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder.

Neuroimaging studies
These studies employ MRI, functional MRI, MR-spectroscopy, and Position Emission Tomography (PET) to explore novel treatment strategies and gain a better understanding of the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.

Contact Us

Eran Chemerinski, MD
Tel: 718-584-900, ext 5168 or
Fax: 718-741-4703

Annenberg Building
One Gustave Levy Place
New York, NY 10029