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The American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) has partnered with Americans for Medical Progress (AMP) to offer the ACNP-AMP BRAD Fellowship. The ACNP-AMP BRAD Fellowship offers the opportunity to raise awareness about the essential role of animals in clinical and basic research for brain-behavior-drug interactions, advancements in psychopharmacology, and careers in the field.

Learn more about our BRAD Fellows below! 

2024 - 2025


Nakul Aggarwal, Ph.D

Dr. Nakul Aggarwal is a student in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MD-PhD) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He earned his BS in Neuroscience from the University of Minnesota in 2016 and his PhD in Neuroscience in November 2022 under the mentorship of Dr. Ned Kalin at UW-Madison. His graduate work involved cross-species, translational studies in nonhuman primates (NHPs) and preadolescent children that characterized white matter alterations in early-life pathological anxiety, as well as the viability of white matter microstructure as a modifiable target in novel therapeutic strategies for youth with anxiety disorders. Nakul is also dedicated to mentorship and the intersection of technology and health policy, having worked with the American Physician Scientist Association and National Academy of Medicine, respectively, on projects related to these efforts. Currently completing his final year of medical school, Nakul plans to enter a research track psychiatry residency in summer 2025 and ultimately pursue a career as a physician-scientist in child and adolescent psychiatry. 

2023 - 2024

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Lindsey Galbo-Thomma, Ph.D

Dr. Lindsey Galbo-Thomma has more than 10 years of preclinical research experience working with an array of laboratory animal species. She recently received her PhD from Wake Forest University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, where she trained with Dr. Paul Czoty. Her research project, funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, investigated vulnerability to alcohol use disorder and the effectiveness of cholinergic drugs for remediating cognitive deficits associated with long-term, heavy drinking. Presently, Dr. Galbo-Thomma is a National Institute on Drug Abuse T32 Appointed Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Training with Dr. Charles France, she is gaining expertise in the behavioral pharmacology of opioids and their effects on various biobehavioral endpoints, and characterizing novel candidate medications for opioid use disorder. In her free time, Dr. Galbo-Thomma enjoys participating in science and drug policy outreach and advocacy activities. She organizes lobby days, meets with Congresspeople and regularly volunteers with harm reduction-oriented non-profit organizations. 

2022 - 2023

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Lana Ruvolo Grasser, Ph.D

Dr. Lana Ruvolo Grasser recently obtained her Ph.D. in Translational Neuroscience from Wayne State University. Under the mentorship of Drs. Arash Javanbakht and Tanja Jovanovic, her National Institute of Mental Health-funded dissertation project, “Biomarkers of Risk and Resilience to Trauma in Syrian Refugee Youth,” project focused on the effects of war trauma on civilians, including therapies to help prevent those traumas from having lifelong negative impacts for families resettled as refugees of Syria, Iraq, the Congo, and Afghanistan. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she led efforts to expand these programs to the virtual space in order to reach school children. Dr. Grasser is also passionate about science policy and advocacy and is a member of the National Science Policy Network as well as this organization’s local branch, SciPol Detroit. In the fall, she will begin a postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Melissa Brotman and the Neuroscience and Novel Therapeutics Unit within the Emotion and Development Branch at the National Institute of Mental Health. Outside the lab, Lana enjoys scuba diving with her dad, being a triathlete, and practicing yoga. 

2021 - 2022


Margaux Kenwood, Ph.D

Dr. Kenwood is a post-doctoral research fellow in the Psychiatry Department at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She received her B.A. in neuroscience from Vanderbilt University in 2015. Under the mentorship of Dr. Ned Kalin, she completed her Ph.D. in neuroscience in the Neuroscience Training Program at the University of Wisconsin – Madison in June of 2021. Her thesis work focused the contribution of the orbitofrontal cortex, a prefrontal region that has been extensively implicated in aberrant regulatory control in the context of stress-related psychopathology, to individual differences in anxious temperament. During her Ph.D, she was supported by the NIMH Training Program in Emotions Research. Dr. Kenwood is excited to continue to leverage translational animal models to ask questions about how individual differences in temperament and stress susceptibility mediate both risk for psychopathology and responses to therapeutic interventions.

2020 - 2021

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Laura Erwin, Ph.D

Laura Erwin, PhD, is a post-doctoral research fellow in the Preclinical Pharmacology Program at McLean Hospital. Her research focuses on elucidating the pharmacological mechanisms and neurobiology that mediate the behavioral effects of drug of abuse. Dr. Erwin received her PhD at LSU Health Sciences Center in April 2019. Her thesis focused on the interactive effects of cannabinoids and opioids, utilizing complex behavioral assays. She joined the Preclinical Pharmacology Program under Dr. Carol Paronis in June 2019. Dr. Erwin’s current research focuses on the potential hallucinogenic-like effects of highly potent synthetic cannabinoids. More recently, she has received the Livingston Fellowship in which she plans to investigate the effects of cannabinoid agonists that vary in affinity and efficacy to induce neurological disruption using noninvasive electroencephalogram (EEG) recordings.

2019 - 2020


Katherine M. Serafine, Ph.D

Katherine M. Serafine, Ph.D., an assistant professor of behavioral neuroscience at the University of Texas at El Paso has been awarded the 2019 - 2020 ACNP-AMP BRAD Fellowship. Dr. Serafine attended Norwich University as an undergraduate. There, she conducted research and served as a teaching assistant for a course focused on the principles of learning. The experience sparked her interest in both experimental science and classroom teaching. She then earned her Ph.D. in behavior, cognition and neuroscience at American University in Washington, D.C.  Her training continued at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, in her hometown, as a postdoctoral fellow in behavioral pharmacology. In Dr. Serafine’s current role as a faculty member at the University of Texas at El Paso, she works with students to study complex human diseases, like obesity, type 2 diabetes and substance use disorders by studying animal models.



Stephanie Maddox, Ph.D

Stephanie Maddox is a research fellow in the Neurobiology of Fear Laboratory at McLean Hospital, and the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. She is currently working under the mentorship of Kerry J. Ressler, M.D. Ph.D. Stephanie earned her Ph.D. in psychology with an emphasis in behavioral neuroscience from Yale University in 2013. Her research is founded on her expertise in animal behavioral models and aims to identify the neuroanatomical and neurobiological mechanisms that underlie stress, trauma and mood-related disorders.  Outside of the lab, Stephanie is passionate about public science advocacy and education. She helped establish and currently directs McLean Hospital’s “Brains Matter” program, a science education and outreach program focused on neuroscience research.

Interested in coordinating BRAD on a larger scale and work in the field of neuropsychopharmacology? Then consider applying for the ACNP/AMP BRAD Fellowship This fellowship is open to early career scientists in the field of neuroscience, psychology, and pharmacology who support humane and essential animal research and who offer a commitment to peer education about animal research issues and raising awareness of opportunities in the field.


Click here to learn more and apply! 

Looking for neuroscience-focused educational materials?

Find them HERE!

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