Abel named chair and DEO of Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology

Date: 
Thursday, September 19, 2019

Ted Abel, PhDTed Abel, PhD, has been named chair and departmental executive officer of the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology.

The department was recently renamed from the Department of Pharmacology to the Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology to reflect the cross-disciplinary work of the department’s faculty, the majority of whom conduct neuroscience-related research. Abel, who also is the Roy J. Carver Chair in Neuroscience and director of the Iowa Neuroscience Institute at the UI, has served as interim department chair and DEO since November 2018.

“We are delighted that Dr. Abel has agreed to become the permanent chair and DEO of neuroscience and pharmacology,” says Brooks Jackson, MD, MBA, University of Iowa vice president for medical affairs and the Tyrone D. Artz Dean of the UI Carver College of Medicine. “He is an outstanding scientist and a skilled leader with a real passion for fostering collaboration and developing the next generation of scientists.”

Abel is recognized for his work on the molecular mechanisms of memory storage and the molecular basis of neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders, including autism. He joined the UI in 2017 as director of the Iowa Neuroscience Institute, an interdisciplinary center that focuses on the causes, treatments, and prevention of diseases that affect the brain and nervous system.

Abel also holds faculty appointments in the UI Carver College of Medicine Departments of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics, Psychiatry, and Biochemistry, and in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences.

Abel is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, and the Association for Psychological Science. He is currently president of the Molecular and Cellular Cognition Society and past chair of the Section on Neuroscience of AAAS.  He has co-authored over 200 scientific papers, and his research has been supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency of the U.S. Department of Defense, the Simons Foundation, the Department of the Army, the National Science Foundation, the Human Frontiers Science Program, the Whitehall Foundation, the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.

He received a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Swarthmore College, a master of philosophy degree in biochemistry from the University of Cambridge, a doctoral degree in biochemistry and molecular biology from Harvard University, and was a postdoctoral fellow in neurobiology at the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University. Prior to moving to Iowa, Abel was the Brush Family Professor of Biology and co-director of the Biological Basis of Behavior Program at the University of Pennsylvania.