Joanna Fowler

Joanna Fowler, PhD

  • PROFESSOR | Psychiatry


Dr. Joanna Fowler is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai School of Medicine.  Dr. Fowler graduated from the University of Colorado’s Ph.D. program in 1967 and joined Brookhaven National Laboratory in 1969, where she is currently a Senior Chemist. After joining Mount Sinai’s Department of Psychiatry in 2006, Dr. Fowler has collaborated with colleagues at Mount Sinai on brain imaging studies of Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), among other conditions.

Dr. Fowler has made significant contributions to brain research.  Beginning in the 70’s, together with other researchers, Dr. Fowler developed a radiotracer to measure brain glucose metabolism non-invasively in humans.  This tracer, 18FDG, has become the most widely used radiotracer in basic research and clinical settings, and has facilitated tremendous advances in the study of the human brain and in tumor detection in the patients with cancer.

Dr. Fowler’s work includes studies of the mechanisms of drug addiction, specifically how the rapid uptake and clearance of cocaine in the brain can help explain its typical pattern of abuse.  She is currently engaged in developing methods to understand the relationship between genes, brain chemistry and behavior.

Dr. Fowler has more than 300 peer-reviewed publications to her credit and has received several awards, including the National Medal of Science and the National Academy of Sciences Award in Chemistry, both bestowed in 2009, the Distinguished Scientist Fellowship in Life Sciences in 2005 and the Distinguished Basic Scientist Award from the Academy of Molecular Imaging in 2005.  She was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2004.  Dr. Fowler holds eight patents for radiolabeling procedures.


BA, University of South Florida

PhD, University of Colorado