Emeran Mayer, MD

Professor, Physiology, Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences,  Vatche and Tamar Manoukian Division of Digestive Diseases, Deparment of Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA

Dr. Mayer is Co-Director of CURE the Director of  UCLA Oppenheimer Center for Neurobiology of Stress,and the PI of a NIH-supported P50 grant on the same topic. His research interest is focused on identifying and characterizing brain circuits concerned with the encoding and modulation of pain and emotional stimuli in health and in various patient populations with chronic idiopathic pain syndromes, such as irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia and interstititial cystitis. Using a wide range of investigative techniques (fMRI, PET, ERP, connectivity modeling, genetic imaging and pharmacologic imaging), Dr. Mayer aims to identify the role of genetic and environmental factors (including early life events) on the responsiveness of arousal and pain modulation circuits, identify possible alterations in specific signaling systems within these circuits (NK1, CRF1 and D2/D3 receptors) and identify structural differences with affected brain regions. He is correlating these brain circuit alterations with alterations in perception and in autonomic responses to various stimuli. Dr. Mayer evaluates the effect of candidate drugs on symptoms, perception and brain activity in patients with functional GI disorders and has embarked on epidemiological and health outcomes studies in these patients.  His preclinical projects are related to the characterization of mechanisms of stress-induced visceral hyperalgesia in rodent models of chronic stress.