Our Team



 Paul A. Newhouse, M.D.
 Professor of Psychiatry, Pharmacology, and Medicine
 Director, Center for Cognitive Medicine
 Department of Psychiatry
 Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

Dr. Newhouse is the  Director of the Center for Cognitive Medicine in the Department of Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is also Jim Turner Professor of Cognitive Disorders at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and Professor of Psychiatry, Pharmacology, and Medicine.

Dr. Newhouse received his undergraduate education at Kansas State University, attended medical school at Loyola University, Stritch School of Medicine, and completed his residency training in psychiatry at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. He completed a fellowship in Geriatric Psychopharmacology at the National Institute of Mental Health.

Dr. Newhouse's research has focused on central nicotinic mechanisms in degenerative brain disorders and the role of nicotinic receptor systems in normal and disordered cognitive functioning in humans. He has also focused attention on the development of novel nicotinic agents for clinical use.  Another major focus includes studying the interaction of estrogen and central cholinergic, catecholaminergic, and serotonergic systems in relation to cognitive and emotional aging in the elderly and novel pharmacologic-imaging methodologies. Other interests include treatment of depression and behavioral disturbances in the elderly, and development of effective novel agents for the treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders of the elderly.

He is a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in both General Psychiatry and Geriatric Psychiatry and in 2002 was awarded the American Psychiatric Association Profiles in Courage award. Dr. Newhouse serves as a frequent consultant to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in the United States and abroad on central nervous system drug development, clinical trial design for dementia and depression, and clinical nicotinic pharmacology. He has served on and has chaired numerous NIH grant review committees, and is an editorial board member and frequent reviewer for scientific journals for manuscripts on depression, dementia and cognitive neuroscience.


Warren D. Taylor, M.D., MHSc
James G. Blakemore Chair in Psychiatry
Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Director, Division of Geriatric Psychiatry
Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Dr. Warren Taylor received his undergraduate education at the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida, where he also completed medical school at the University of South Florida College of Medicine.  The then completed his residency training in psychiatry and his geriatric psychiatry fellowship at Duke University.  He currently holds the James G. Blakemore Chair in Psychiatry and serves as the Director for the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry.

Broadly, Dr. Taylor’s research focuses on neurobiological factors influencing critical outcomes in depression in older adults, specifically examining the interface between aging and depression.  His team examines biological factors that contribute to the occurrence, phenomenology, and outcomes of late-life depression.  His work uses neuroimaging and neurocognitive methods to advance our understanding of the pathogenesis of depression and its long-term consequences.  This work is often accompanied by clinical trials designed to probe the biological substrates of the antidepressant response, using both naturalistic and open-label study designs.  This work has elucidated structural and functional neuroimaging findings are related to depression and treatment outcomes.  Much of this work has focused on the interface between vascular disease and depression in older populations.  His lab has examined how cerebrovascular ischemia may damage neural circuits involved in mood regulation, how this injury may contribute to the development of depression, and what genetic factors may influence the development of this ischemia.

He is a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in both General Psychiatry and Geriatric Psychiatry.  In addition to his appointment at Vanderbilt
University Medical Center, he is also a Physician Investigator in the Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center (GRECC) at the VA Tennessee Valley Health System.



Patricia Serrano Andrews, M.D.

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

Assistant Training Director of the Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship


Dr. Patricia Serrano Andrews joined the Vanderbilt faculty in 2019 after completing her Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship at the Indiana University School of Medicine. She is also a former Honors Scholar of the Geriatric Mental Health Foundation and board-certified psychiatrist from Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia. During residency, she served as both Academic Chief and Chief Resident and received the Leadership in Psychiatry Award at Einstein. Prior to residency, Dr. Serrano Andrews worked at the University of Massachusetts on a project in under - recognition of delirium in the Emergency Department. Her research interest are int eh area of Delirium, Neurocognitive Disorder in the elderly and Late-Life Depression. 




Alan Lewis, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science

Dr. Alan Lewis completed his undergraduate degree in Chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania and received his MD and PhD as part of the Medical Scientist Training Program at Northwestern University . He then undertook residency training in psychiatry at Yale University, followed by a research fellowship with Dr. Marina Picciotto. After briefly joining the faculty at Yale, he moved to Vanderbilt in 2018, where he is Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and member of the Center for Cognitive Medicine. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurobiology in General Psychiatry. Dr. Lewis's research focuses on understanding the neurobiology underlying social impairments across neuropsychiatric disorder, with an emphasis on development of novel treatments of aggressive behaviors.


Sepideh Shokouhi, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science

Sepi Shokouhi is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Center for Cognitive Medicine. She completed her Ph.D. in biomedical engineering at Stony Brook University in New York after completing her Masters of Engineering degree at TU-Graz in Austria (major: physics). In 2011, she received a K99-R00 fellowship from the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB). The overall goal of her current research is to develop novel biomarker concepts and computational methodologies for pharmacologic-imaging in Alzheimer’s disease.  While her primary expertise is in positron emission tomography (PET), she has expanded her research activities to a broad range of computational multi-modal data analysis strategies that combine the techniques of structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), functional MRI (fMRI), digital biomarkers, PET, neuropsychology, and cognitive neuroscience to understand the anatomic, functional, and neurochemical bases of changes in cognition and behavior in normal and pathological aging. Her current research focuses on developing and validating novel amyloid and tau imaging methodologies to explore the relationships between early cognitive symptoms, sleep, tau/Aβ burden in normal and pathological. One of her primary research objectives is to determine how sex-specific differences in the brain’s functional and structural organization will affect the progression of AD pathologies. Her recent research on sex-specific differences in the spread of tauopathy across brain regions was highlighted at Alzheimer’s Association International Conference news media press conference followed by national and global media exposure.  Dr. Shokouhi is the recipient of the 2017 Tracy Lynn Faber Memorial Award by the Computer & Instrumentation Council of the Society of Nuclear Medicine & Molecular Imaging for her accomplishments in computational brain imaging research.


Alexandra Key, Ph.D.
Research Associate Professor of Hearing & Speech, Psychiatry
Director, Psychophysiology Lab
Associate Director, Translational Neuroimaging Core, Vanderbilt Kennedy Center

Dr. Key is a cognitive psychologist with extensive experience using event-related potentials (ERP) to investigate typical and atypical cognitive functioning across the lifespan.  Her research interests include identifying brain-based markers of risk for adverse outcomes and developing novel psychophysiological assessments of sensory and cognitive processes optimized for use in individuals who are unable or unmotivated to provide reliable behavioral responses. Several of Dr. Key’s ERP paradigms are currently used as outcome measures in behavioral and pharmacological treatment studies. She is an editorial board member and frequent reviewer for manuscripts and grants on cognitive neuroscience and developmental disabilities.


Nancy Morton, MSN, APRN, FNP-C
Nurse Practitioner, Research
(615) 343-1015

Nancy joined the Center for Cognitive Medicine in September of 2016.  She has a Masters of Science in Nursing from Austin Peay State University and is board certified in family medicine.  She has over 20 years nursing experience in both clinical and research related fields. Some of her research experience includes the Framingham Heart Study as well as a phase 1 study at Vanderbilt Medical Center’s Department of Neurology.  Nancy looks forward to patient care in the geriatric field and have a direct influence on patient treatment utilizing research outcomes from studies at the Center for Cognitive Medicine.


Kimberly Albert, Ph.D.
Research Instructor
(615) 327-7030

Kim joins Warren Taylor's lab after having been a member of the Newhouse lab since 2009. Her scientific interests include brain networks involved in cognitive and emotional processes, and the effects of hormones and mood states on these systems. Kim received her BS in Neuroscience from Johns Hopkins University and her PhD from the University of Vermont Neuroscience Graduate Program.


Alexander Conley, Ph.D.
Research Instructor 

Alex joined the Newhouse lab in November 2016 after completing his PhD in cognitive neuroscience from the University of Newcastle, Australia. He also holds a BPsyc (Hons) from the University of Newcastle. Alex’s scientific interests lie in the study of how new medicines may help reverse the cognitive and memory problems that develop following trauma and neurodegeneration.


Blythe Corbett, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Psychology

Dr. Corbett is an associate professor at Vanderbilt University in the Department of Psychiatry and Psychology and Investigator with the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center and Center for Cognitive Medicine.  Dr. Corbett is the Director of the Social Emotional NeuroScience Endocrinology (SENSE) lab, a translational research program focused on reciprocal social functioning and stress responsivity of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Her lab uses neuropsychological, physiological and neuroimaging techniques, which are often implemented in natural settings, such as playgrounds.
Dr. Corbett is a licensed psychologist who has been working with children with autism and related neurodevelopmental disorders since 1991. She has published widely in high impact peer-reviewed journals, serves on several editorial boards, and her research is funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. Dr. Corbett is recognized for her innovative paradigms and treatments, including SENSE Theatre®, which combines theatrical and behavioral techniques in a peer-mediated, community-based intervention to improve social competence in youth with ASD.


Neil Woodward, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, and Psychology
Bixler-Johnson-Mayes Chair

Dr. Woodward's research focuses on understanding the neural basis of schizophrenia and related psychotic disorders. His lab uses a variety of approaches, including cognitive psychology, neuroimaging, and neuropsychological methods. A particular area of interest is brain connectivity and how large-scale brain networks are affected in psychiatric illnesses. 

Dr. Woodward's background includes training in neuroimaging and clinical psychology, primarily neoropsychological assessment. As well, he is licensed as a clinical psychologist in the state of Tennessee.

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Amy R. Boegel, Ph.D.
Clinical Trials Research Coordinator III
(615) 936-0231

Amy joined the Center for Cognitive Medicine (CCM) in April 2018.  Prior to joining the CCM, she worked as a research coordinator at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt where she worked with children who have chronic pain and anxiety by offering Cognitive Behavioral Therapy through a web-based program. 

Amy has worked at Vanderbilt for a number of years and had the pleasure of working in a variety of departments on various research projects to include: The Center for Quality Aging, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital and Vanderbilt University.  Amy says she does what she loves and has no plans of leaving the field of Research or Vanderbilt anytime soon.

Amy considers herself a lifelong learner and has earned several degrees including, but not limited to a Ph.D. in Psychology.


Shirin Pulous, B.S.
Lead Administrative Assistant
(615) 936-0928

Shirin joined the CCM in 2013. As the Lead Administrative Assistant to Dr. Newhouse, Shirin handles, among other tasks, his appointments & travel, as well as the travel arrangements for other staff and graduate students in the lab. She also handles the financial and regulatory aspects of the Center for Cognitive Medicine studies including managing hospital billing, research billing, and liaising with the Vanderbilt Institute for Clinical and Translational Research and the Vanderbilt University Medical Center billing systems to ensure financial accountability.

She is very instrumental in organizing schedules for visiting faculty members. In her new role at CCM she is excited to expand her knowledge, skills, and experience. Shirin has a B.S. degree in Mathematics.

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Xuewen Gong, B.S.
Clinical/Transitional Research Coordinator I

Xuewen joined the Center for Cognitive Medicine in April 2018. Prior to the CCM, she worked as a research assistant at Vanderbilt University in preclinical drug development with animal models for psychiatric disorders (e.g. cocaine addiction, schizophrenia, Alzheimer's disease).  In the future, she plans to use her preclinical and clinical research experience, combined with her interest in statistics, to pursue a PhD degree to examine the effectiveness for pharmacotherapies and cognitive-behavioral interventions for various psychiatric disorders. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Vanderbilt University in May 2016.

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Brian D. Boyd, B.S.

Brian recently relocated to Nashville from North Carolina to join the CCM. He previously worked in the neuroimaging lab at Duke University supporting the research of several investigators, including Dr. Warren Taylor. Brian contributes to the CCM with his knowledge of coding and databases, as well as image processing and analysis. At Vanderbilt, he collaborates with a team from several departments to maintain a shared XNAT system for imaging processing and archiving.

Brian received a B.S. in Mathematical Sciences from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2001. In his spare time, he is enjoying getting to know Nashville with his wife, two daughters, and three dogs.

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Katie Anders, B.S.
Clinical/Transitional Research Coordinator

Katie has been a member of the Center for Cognitive Medicine since October 2015. She obtained her B.S. From Middle Tennessee State University in Psychology. Previous to joining our team, Katie worked as a Research Coordinator for the Adult and Child Cystic Fibrosis research program at Vanderbilt. It is then that she realized her true interest in research. Wanting to pursue her previous dream of being in the field of Psychology, she joined our team to work in Geriatric Depression Research. She hopes to further expand her knowledge of research in the field of Psychology and looks forward to helping to make a difference.


Carla Porter, B.A.
Clinical Trials Associate

Carla joined the CCM in 2017.  Originally from northern Virginia, Carla was employed in pharmaceutical fields for ten years before deciding to pursue a career in research. She received her B.A. in Biology from Lipscomb University.  As a Clinical Research Associate in Dr. Taylor’s lab, Carla enjoys working with the geriatric population.


Jennifer N. Vega, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Jennifer Vega is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Vanderbilt University Center for Cognitive Medicine in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. She received her doctorate in Neuroscience from Vanderbilt University in 2018. Her dissertation work focused on investigating nicotine as a treatment for cognitive impairment secondary to chemotherapy in lymphoma, breast, ovarian and colon cancer survivors. Her scientific interests lie in translational research focused on pathologic cognitive aging in patient populations at increased risk for dementia.


Katherine Goulden, B.S.
Research Assistant

Kate joined the CCM in August 2019. As an undergraduate and she studied early detection of and interventions for psychosis as well as working memory. Along with an interest in neuroimaging, she intends to pursue a PhD in neuropsychological rehabilitation. She graduated from Purdue a published author and is happy to leave the cornfields for a big city.


Amanda Marino, B.S. 
Graduate Student

Amanda is a first year graduate student in the Neuroscience Graduate Program. She received her B.S. in Neuroscience from the University of New Hampshire in 2016. Prior to attending Vanderbilt she worked in the Desimone Lab at MIT studying attention in macaques.


Carrie Williams, B.A.
Research Coordinator

Carrie has been a member of the CCM since January 2018. Prior to joining the CCM, She worked in a lab in Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center. As a research coordinator in Dr. Taylor's lab, she enjoys working directly with participants. She received her B.A. in Neuroscience from Vanderbilt University in 2015.