Child and Adolescent

The Center includes many faculty dedicated to advancing our understanding of child and adolescent depression.

Laura Mufson, PhD

Laura Mufson, PhD

Dr. Mufson is a professor of medical psychology at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and associate director of the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. She also serves as co-director of the Office of Clinical Psychology at CUIMC and director of Clinical Psychology at New York State Psychiatric Institute. Dr. Mufson developed the adaptation of interpersonal psychotherapy for adolescent depression (IPT-A) and is an expert international trainer in IPT-A, having conducted training workshops on IPT-A throughout the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Europe, and Scandinavia. Dr. Mufson has had an active research career studying the efficacy and effectiveness of evidence-based psychotherapies for children and adolescents. She has been a principal investigator, co-investigator, and consultant with colleagues on numerous grants studying adaptations of IPT-A delivered in schools, primary care clinics, and community clinics. She is the author of three books on interpersonal psychotherapy, including the adaptations for prevention of depression and the family-based model for preadolescents. Additionally, she is the author of numerous publications on adolescent depression, interpersonal psychotherapy, and clinical interventions for social anxiety and depression in adolescents delivered in community settings. Dr. Mufson is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and Division 53, Society for Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology.

Current Projects

1. Engaging Black Youth in Depression and Suicide Prevention Treatment with Urban Schools: A Preliminary Study

Grant: R34 MH19290

Role: Co-Investigator (Principal Investigator: Michael A. Lindsey, PhD)

Description: The goal of this study is to examine the effectiveness of the Making Connections Intervention—a theoretically-driven 1-2 session intervention designed to improve engagement, perceived relevance, and treatment satisfaction among depressed, Black adolescents—and to identify key mediators of both engagement and response to depression treatment. This study will also tailor outreach strategies to the particular context and communication preferences of the adolescent and parents through the use of digital technologies.

2. An Adaptive Algorithm-Based Approach to Treatment for Adolescent Depression

Grant: R01MH108758

Role: Co-Investigator (Principal Investigator: Meredith Gunlicks-Stoessel, PhD)

Description: The purpose of the study is to evaluate the effectiveness of two adaptive treatment strategies (ATSs) for adolescent depression using a sequential multiple assignment randomized trial (SMART) design. The ATSs include delivery of an evidence-based psychotherapy for adolescent depression (interpersonal psychotherapy, IPT-A), systematic symptom monitoring, and an empirically-derived algorithm that specifies whether, when, and how to augment IPT-A.

Recent Publications

Reyes-Portillo, J. A., McGlinchey, E. L., Toso-Salman, J., Chin, E. M., Fisher, P. W., & Mufson, L. (2019). Clinician experience and attitudes toward safety planning with adolescents at risk for suicide. Archives of Suicide Research, 23(2), 222-233.

Gunlicks-Stoessel, M., Mufson, L., Bernstein, G., Westervelt, A., Reigstad, K., Klimes-Dougan, B., Cullen, K., Murray, A., & Vock, D. (2019). Critical decision points for augmenting interpersonal psychotherapy for depressed adolescents: A pilot sequential multiple assignment randomized trial. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 58(1), 80-91.

Mufson, L., Rynn, M., Yanes-Lukin, P., Choo, T. H., Soren, K., Stewart, E., & Wall, M. (2018). Stepped care interpersonal psychotherapy treatment for depressed adolescents: A pilot study in pediatric clinics. Administration and Policy in Mental Health, 45(3), 417-431



Phone: 646-774-5791

Office Address: 40 Haven Avenue, Kolb Annex 253, New York, NY 10032

David Pagliaccio, PhD

David Pagliaccio, PhD

Dr. Pagliaccio graduated from Brown University with a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience and from Washington University in St. Louis with a PhD in neuroscience. He completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Emotion and Development Branch of the National Institute of Mental Health. Currently, Dr. Pagliaccio is an assistant professor at Columbia University, and his research focuses on understanding the neural underpinnings of pediatric affective disorders, particularly depression and anxiety, and identifying neural markers of risk and treatment response.

Current Projects

1. Testing a Diathesis-Stress Model of Adolescent Suicide: Dopaminergic, Social, and Inhibitory Mechanisms

Grant: R01 MH126181

Role: Principal Investigator

Description: This project involves MRI, smartphone assessment, and longitudinal clinical follow-up to understand neural and stress-related mechanisms underlying suicidal ideation or behaviors in adolescents.

2. Imaging the Neurodevelopmental Trajectory of Depression and Anxiety Disorders with HCP Protocols

Grant: R56 MH121426

Role: Sub-award Principal Investigator (Principal Investigator: Anastasia Yendiki, PhD)

Description: This project involves MRI and longitudinal follow-up of adolescents enrolled in a Human Connectome Project aiming to identify reliable biomarkers for depression and anxiety disorders in adolescents.

Recent Publications

Pagliaccio, D., Alqueza, K. L., Marsh, R., & Auerbach, R. P. (2020). Brain volume abnormalities in youth at high risk for depression: Adolescent Brain and Cognitive Development study. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 59(10), 1178-1188.

Pagliaccio, D., Middleton, R., Hezel, D., Steinman, S., Snorrason, I., Gershkovich, M., Campeas, R., Pinto, A., Van Meter, P., Simpson, H. B., & Marsh, R. (2019). Task-based fMRI predicts response and remission to exposure therapy in obsessive-compulsive disorder. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 116(41), 20346-20353.

Pagliaccio, D., Pine, D. S., Barch, D. M., Luby, J. L., & Leibenluft, E. (2018). Irritability trajectories, cortical thickness, and clinical outcomes in a sample enriched for preschool depression. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 57(5), 336-342.e6.



Phone: 646-774-5556

Office Address: 1051 Riverside Drive, Pardes 6106, New York, NY 10032