Investigator, Center for Psychiatric Neuroscience, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research
Director, Recognition and Prevention (RAP) Program, Department of Psychiatry, The Zucker Hillside Hospital
Professor, Psychiatry and Molecular Medicine, Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine
Dr. Barbara Cornblatt is a professor of psychiatry and molecular medicine at the Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine. For more than 20 years, she has focused her research on the causes and treatment of serious mental illness.
She also directs the Recognition and Prevention (RAP) program, which she founded in 1998, at Zucker Hillside Hospital. RAP is dedicated to treating early warning signs of mental illness in adolescents and young adults and is one of the longest running centers of its kind in North America. More than 500 young people have participated in both the research and treatment components of this program. Early treatment in the RAP Clinic has been consistently associated with a high rate of clinical improvement.
Dr. Cornblatt has authored or co-authored over 150 scientific articles and book chapters and has given many scientific talks nationally and internationally to a variety of prestigious scientific organizations, hospitals and consumer groups. She is the co-director of the International Prodromal Research Network, which sponsors international collaborations and prevention studies. She is also a member of the North American Prodrome Longitudinal Study (NAPLS) consortium, one of the largest and most successful prevention collaborations worldwide.
Dr. Cornblatt focuses on the neurocognitive roots of mental illness and has developed the Continuous Performance Test, Identical Pairs (CPT-IP) version, considered internationally to be one of the cutting-edge measures of working memory and attention. She recently received awards from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI Queens/Nassau) and from the Women’s Health Institute, Katz Women’s Hospital (Lorinda de Roulet Award) for the achievements of the RAP research program.
Dr. Cornblatt’s research focus is on the early identification and treatment of adolescents and young adults (ages 12-22) who are considered to be at-risk for developing serious psychiatric illness as adults, especially schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders. The major goal of the RAP program is to prevent illness from developing in at-risk youngsters. Since the onset of the RAP program in 1998, over 500 young people have participated in both treatment and research components of the program. While a high rate of clinical improvement has already resulted from the RAP intervention procedures, new treatment strategies, both pharmacological and psychosocial, continue to be evaluated, with a particular emphasis on family involvement.
From a research perspective, the RAP program is focused on identifying biologically based risk factors and understanding the biological mechanisms leading to illness. Mechanisms and predictors are studied on multiple levels of development, starting from the earliest genetic factors up through a number of cognitive and behavioral problems. A major emphasis is directed at improving real world functioning (e.g., social skills and success at school and/or work).
Dr. Cornblatt is also concerned with potential environmental triggers of illness and has extensively studied the impact of cannabis on emerging symptoms. Most recently, the RAP program and eight other top academic centers have formed a multi-site collaboration to expand prodromal research. Some of the new areas introduced into the RAP research program include studies of the structure and function of the brain (MRIs), electrical activity on the brain (EEG), impact of cortisol and stress and possibly blood analytes, proteins and other biomarkers to improve accuracy of prediction.
The RAP program is funded by the NIMH and several private foundations, including Robert Wood Johnson and the International Mental Health Research Organization.
RAP Program Main Phone: (718) 470 8115
Baruch College, CUNY, New York, NY
Field of Study: Industrial Psychology
Graduate Faculty, New School University, New York, NY
Field of Study: Experimental Psychology
1975 Social Science Research Council Fellow, Summer Institute on Developmental Genetics
1978 Travel Award, XIV International Congress of Genetics, Moscow, USSR, 1978
1978-1980 Behavior Genetics Association, Member-at-large
1982-1983 Chair, Professional Training Committee
1987-1989 Society for the Study of Social Biology, Board of Directors(also 1990-1993)
1988-1989 Chair, Public and Professional Affairs Committee
1989 Ad hoc member (also 1990, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004)
1991-1995 NIMH: Clinical Psychopathology IRG, Member, Panel 1
1994-1995 Chairman, Panel 1
1996 Joseph Zubin Memorial Award, NY State Psychiatric Institute and Western Psychiatric Institute
1999 Member, NIMH Workshops: Treatment of Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder in Children and Adolescents,
2000-2001 President, Society for Research in Psychopathology (Board of Directors, 1985-2000)
2000, 2003 Medication Adherence
2001 Informed Consent in Early Psychosis Workshop
2001 Member, NIH Behavioral and Biobehavioral Processes Working Group, Center for Scientific Review Annual meeting program chair, 1987-89; Membership Chair 1985-2004)
2002 Organizer and Co-Chair, International Prodromal Research Network (IRPN),
Prodromal Methodological Workshop Series, Sponsored by the Staglin Music Festival Foundation and Janssen Pharmaceutical; Meetings held in New York, Vancouver and California; Network activities leading to formation of the North American Prodromal Longitudinal Study (NAPLS) consortium
2003 Early Serious Mental Illness Research Network Meeting
2003 Excellence in Achievement Commendation awarded by Women’s Health Conference
2003 NAMI: Award for Research Excellence, NAMI, 2003, Queens/Nassau,
2004 Scientific Collaboration in Prodromal Schizophrenia Research
2004, 2006 Fellowships in Psychopathology and Disorders of Aging, ZRG1, BBBP-G21L
2004-present North America Prodromal Longitudinal Study (NAPLS) consortium and working group
2007, 2008 NIH Loan Repayment Program Reviewer
2008 Special study sections ZMH1 ERB-Z, ZMH1 CNF-E (02) S
2010 Co-Chair (with Ty Cannon) of IPRN satellite meeting held in conjunction with the International Congress of Schizophrenia Research (ICOSR)
2011-present ITVA (Intervention study section)