The Program for Interdisciplinary Neuroscience is a vibrant community of physicians, scientists and other professionals who focus every day on helping patients suffering from conditions of the brain, mind or nervous system.

We’re mobilizing experts from across BWH and its diverse specialty areas—all relevant to brain health. By joining forces, in a coordinated and collaborative fashion, this talented community of brain experts is particularly well equipped to take on the most complex neurological challenges of our time.


NeuroTechnology Studio

The NeuroTechnology Studio is a new platform of advanced instrumentation and technical expertise now under development to help encourage and facilitate the critical work of hundreds of investigators each year studying the brain, mind and nervous system. To be widely shared among neuroscientists and physicians, the NeuroTechnology Studio aims to expedite important research discoveries and, ultimately, better outcomes for patients struggling with conditions of the brain. The Studio’s first pieces of equipment are installed and ready for use by the community.

Traveling Neuroscience Fellows

This new 3-year Traveling Neuroscience Fellows program is designed for early career BWH postdoctoral fellows. The Program aims to provide Fellows with access to the best mentors, collaborators and resources to help them achieve as much as possible during their postdoctoral training.  Its novel feature is the opportunity to identify collaborators at an approved neuroscience institution and participate in a 3-month Research Sabbatical. This Program’s first RFA was issued in June 2017 and awardees were announced in October 2017. Congratulations to the awardees!

Women’s Brain Initiative

Many conditions disproportionately affect women — such as, Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, anxiety, depression, eating disorders and headaches. However, we know little about the reasons for such disparities. That’s why we’ve launched the Women’s Brain Initiative: to fill major unmet needs within the field of women’s brain health. This Program includes an important portfolio of coordinated major research efforts— as well as pilot projects, fellowships, seminars and symposia. All of the Program’s components are focused on why girls and women are at increased risk for certain conditions, and potential opportunities for new treatments and prevention. See Learn More below for details— including the January 2018 announcement of the WBI Pilot Project Program’s awardees and March 2018 issuance of the WBI Research Fellowship Program’s request for proposals. Proposals were due April 16 and awardees will be announced in June.

Pain Navigators Research Program – Under Development

Chronic pain can be crippling, and it is often daunting for patients to find effective treatments. Together— with the BWH Pain Medicine Division— we’re designing a 2-year clinical research program to test a new patient care model for individuals suffering from back or neck pain. “Pain Navigators” will be hired and trained specifically to help patients navigate the many pain care options, secure prompt appointments with the right specialists, and ensure subsequent appointments as needed.  If improved patient outcomes are observed—including reductions in opioid use—we hope to expand to other pain types.

Neuroscience PET Imaging Pilot Projects Program

The Program for Interdisciplinary Neuroscience, BWH Department of Radiology and Harvard NeuroDiscovery Center joined forces to attract and fund the best novel ideas for PET-based pilot projects aimed at investigating disorders of the nervous system. Three grants, each totaling $30,000 (direct costs), were awarded July 2016.


Applications were judged on the basis of scientific merit, novelty and value of the project in obtaining preliminary data that could lead to sponsored research (e.g., investigator—initiated RO1 research grants, career development awards, industry or foundation support). Clinical, translational and basic research were eligible for these awards.

Bench to Bedside to Bench – Our New Seminar Series

We’ve launched a unique educational opportunity, led by Dr. Martin Samuels, for BWH researchers who focus on conditions of the brain and mind. Each seminar is based on an interview and examination by Dr. Samuels of a BWH patient volunteer who is suffering from a neurological condition.  The seminar enables investigators to observe how a physician approaches and diagnoses patient conditions—as well as to hear Dr. Samuels’ perspective about ways to help the patient.  In many instances, these seminars are the first and only opportunities for researchers to observe patients who are dealing with devastating nervous system disorders—and to see first-hand the urgency and importance of their research efforts!

Neurosciences in the News

 The Menopause and Alzheimer’s Connection

April 18, 2018,  New York Times

 BWH Tests Device That Can Lead to Eliminating Seizures

March 22, 2018,  WBZ CBS Boston News

 Is Anxiety an early sign of Alzheimer’s?

January 12, 2018, Medical News Today

 Why Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery is Difficult

January 12, 2018, The Washington Post

 Breaking Barriers for Treating Brain Cancer

January, 2018, BWH Clinical and Research News

 How Opioids Kill

January 8, 2018, Scientific American

 Exercise May Aid Parkinson’s Disease

December 13, 2017, New York Times

Seeking Optimal Opioid Prescribing by Surgery Type

October 3, 2017, Practical Pain Management

Diary of a Concussion

Sep 27, 2017, The Verge

 Next Challenge for CTE: Detect in the living

Sep 23, 2017, Boston Globe

Can Asthma Drug Treat Parkinson’s Disease

Sep 19, 2017, National Institutes of Health


may, 2018

25may8:30 am10:30 amNeuroimmunology Series