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Member Profiles:

Melvin McInnis, MD

“The flagship Prechter Longitudinal Study of Bipolar Disorder reflects the participation and contributions of thousands. Through the experiences volunteered by so many, we will gain greater knowledge and understanding to form the base for improved treatments for this illness.”

Dr. McInnis is the Thomas B. and Nancy Upjohn Woodworth Professor of Bipolar Disorder and Depression. He directs the bipolar clinical and research programs at the University of Michigan Depression Center. He is the Scientific Director and Principal Investigator of the Heinz C. Prechter Bipolar Research Fund, leading a team of over 30 faculty and staff with several projects focused on bipolar disorder. They include collaborative programs using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) to model bipolar disorder, the use of mobile technology to monitor and predict mood states changes in the illness, as well as assessments of cognitive capacity of individuals with bipolar disorder.

Dr. McInnis received his M.D. from the University of Iceland in 1983; his psychiatric training was at the prestigious Maudsley and Bethlem Royal Hospitals (Kings College London) in the UK. He completed his specialty qualifications in 1988 (MRCPsych) and was elected Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (UK) in 2007. His post-doctoral training was in Medical and Psychiatric Genetics at the Johns Hopkins University from 1989 to 1993. He was on the faculty of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University from 1993 to 2004.

Dr. McInnis came to the University of Michigan in 2004 with the vision of changing the scientific landscape in bipolar disorder. He established a longitudinal study of bipolar disorder with a focus on detailed clinical and biological outcomes research in this devastating illness. He collaborates nationally and internationally in many programs of bipolar research. He has forged substantial collaborations with investigators across several schools of the University of Michigan, ranging from genetics, public health, and psychology, through complex modeling approaches that engage experts from mathematics and computer science.

Dr. McInnis points out that the key to understanding bipolar illness is the careful study of people with the disease to determine what causes them to become ill. What helps them stay well? How can we understand the interaction of risk and protective factors around the person and change them to favor the person and his/her family? Dr. McInnis is actively involved at the university in mentoring junior faculty and research staff on clinical translational research in bipolar disorder. In addition to his clinical, research, and mentoring roles, Dr. McInnis has published 190 peer-reviewed articles in his field along with several chapters in textbooks. He is an active reviewer for several top ranked scientific journals.