Davangere P. Devanand, MBBS, MD
Areas of Expertise / Conditions Treated
- Professor of Psychiatry (in Neurology and in the Gertrude H. Sergievsky Center) at CUMC
- Director of Geriatric Psychiatry
Dr. D. P. Devanand is Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology at the Columbia University Medical Center. He completed medical school at Christian Medical College, Vellore, in India, and trained in psychiatry at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore, India.
He completed psychiatry residency training at S.U.N.Y. Upstate Medical Center, Syracuse, NY, and Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, CT. He then did a clinical research fellowship in Biological Psychiatry at Columbia University, and has continued on the faculty at Columbia University since 1987. Currently, he is Director of the DIvision of Geriatric Psychiatry, Co-Director of the Memory Disorders Center, and Co-Director of the Adult and Late Life Depression Clinic at the New York State Psychiatric Institute. His research studies involve Alzheimer’s disease and geriatric depression.
His research helped to define the clinical features and treatment response in elderly patients with dysthymic disorder, a chronic depressive illness. He pioneered studies on the interface between depression and cognitive impairment in the elderly, and is well-known for his research into early diagnostic markers of Alzheimer’s disease and the treatment of psychosis and agitation in this disorder. He has published research articles in major journals including a landmark study on antipsychotic discontinuation in Alzheimer’s disease in the New England Journal of Medicine, and articles in several journals including JAMA, Annals of Neurology, Neurology, Archives of General Psychiatry, and American Journal of Psychiatry.
He has received the International Psychogeriatric Association Research Award, the American Association of Geriatric Psychiatry Distinguished Investigator Award, and the American Psychiatric Association Jack Weinberg Memorial Award in geriatric psychiatry. Dr. Devanand has been the Principal Investigator in over 20 grants funded by the NIH, Department of Defense, and industry. He has published over 300 papers, and is the author of three books.
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- Behavioral Health Columbia University Employee Plan
Credentials & Experience
Education & Training
- State University of New York
- Residency: Yale University Hospital
- Residency: State University of New York - Downstate Medical Center
- Geriatric Psychiatry
Honors & Awards
2001 Distinguished Scientist Award, Indo-American Psychiatric Association
2003-present: listed in Best Doctors in America, Best Doctors in New York
2014 American Psychiatric Association Jack Weinberg Memorial Award in Geriatric Psychiatry
2015 American Association of Geriatric Psychiatry Distinguished Investigator Award
Research interests include treatment strategies for mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease, including treatment of psychosis and agitation in these disorders. Other interests include early diagnostic markers of Alzheimer's disease, and the interface between depression and cognitive impairment.
Anti-viral therapy in Alzheimer’s disease PI: Dr. Davangere Devanand, MD
Anti-viral therapy in Alzheimer’s disease is investigating the efficacy of treating patients with mild Alzheimer’s disease (AD) with the U.S.A marketed generic antiviral drug valacyclovir. Valacyclovir at 2g to 4g daily, repurposed as an anti-AD drug, is being compared to matching placebo in the treatment of 130 mild AD patients (65 valacyclovir, 65 placebo) who test positive for herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV1) or herpes simplex virus-2 (HSV2). The study is a randomized, double-blind, 18-month Phase II proof of concept trial. This study is funded by the NIH.
For more information, please contact Julianna Pollina at 646-774-8638.
Cognitive Training in Mild Cognitive Impairment PI: Dr. Davangere Devanand, MD
The purpose of this study is to evaluate if systematic cognitive training can improve cognitive performance in participants (ages 55-95 years) with memory loss. This study is evaluating the effects of Computerized Cognitive Training (CCT) for improvement in everyday cognitive and function status, in addition to long-term changes in brain networks over an 18- month period. Although there is no distribution of medication for this study, participants are required to have an at-home computer. This study is funded by the NIH.
For more information, please contact Jessica D’Antonio at 646-774-8674.
Treatment of Psychosis and Agitation in Alzheimer’s disease PI: Dr. Davangere Devanand, MD
This study involves a 12-week double-blind treatment trial in which adult outpatients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) who have agitation/aggression with or without psychosis (hallucinations or delusions) will receive either low-dose lithium or placebo. Participants are allowed to receive other specific psychiatric medications if needed during the study, and will be closely monitored by physicians who specialize in memory disorders. Participants will receive open treatment with lithium, if clinically indicated, after completing the 12-week double blind trial. This study is funded by the NIH.
For more information, please contact Laura Simon-Pearson at 646-774-8671.
Escitalopram for Agitation in Alzheimer’s disease PI: Dr. Davangere Devanand, MD
This study involves a 12-week double-blind treatment trial in which adult outpatients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) who have agitation/aggression may receive escitalopram or placebo in combination with a psychosocial intervention. Participants will be closely monitored by physicians who specialize in memory disorders. After completing the 12-week double blind trial, participants will receive open treatment with Escitalopram for 12 weeks, if clinically indicated. This study is funded by the NIH.
For more information, please contact Laura Simon-Pearson at 646-774-8671.
Testing Olfaction in Primary Care to detect Alzheimer's disease and other Dementias (TOPAD)
Dr. Devanand and Dr. Jose Luchsinger, MD are multiple PIs on this project. The goal of this project is to test the 12-item BSIT, a short, standardized version of the 40-item University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT), for detection of dementia among elderly persons with cognitive concerns in a community-based primary care setting, in response to PAR-15-359 (Novel Approaches to Diagnosing Alzheimer’s Disease and Predicting Progression), and its second aim: “Identifying new biomarkers that are minimally invasive, inexpensive, usable in community settings”.
Olfactory Impairment in Offspring Study of Racial Disparities in Alzheimer's disease
We plan to test the 12-item BSIT, a short, standardized, cross-culturally validated subset of the 40-item University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT), in an add-on study to the recently funded project “Offspring study of mechanisms for racial disparities in Alzheimer's disease." Middle-aged offspring (ages 40-64) of parents who participated in the Washington Heights Inwood Columbia Aging Project (WHICAP) are being studied with clinical and neuropsychological evaluation (n=3,000), high-resolution structural MRI (n=1,000), and Aβ PET (n=150).
- Neuropsychiatry/Cognitive Disorders
- Alzheimer's disease and age-related cognitive decline
“Treatment of Psychosis and Agitation in Alzheimer’s disease”: 5/15/2014-1/31/2020.
OLFACTORY IMPAIRMENT IN OFFSPRING STUDY OF RACIAL DISPARITIES IN ALZHEIMERS DISEASE (Federal Gov)
Sep 1 2018 - May 31 2023
TESTING OLFACTION IN PRIMARY CARE TO DETECT ALZHEIMER S DISEASE AND OTHER DEMENTIAS (TOPAD) (Federal Gov)
Sep 30 2017 - May 31 2022
ANTI-VIRAL THERAPY IN ALZHEIMER S DISEASE (Federal Gov)
Sep 15 2017 - May 31 2022
COGNITIVE TRAINING AND NEUROPLASTICITY IN MILD COGNITIVE IMPAIRMENT (Federal Gov)
Jul 15 2017 - Apr 30 2022
OLFACTORY DEFICITS AND DONEPEZIL TREATMENT IN COGNITIVELY IMPAIRED ELDERLY (Federal Gov)
Jun 15 2013 - May 31 2019
PREDICTORS OF SEVERITY IN ALZHEIMER S DISEASE (Federal Gov)
Sep 1 2011 - May 31 2017
LOW-DOSE LITHIUM FOR THE TREATMENT OF BEHAVIORAL SYMPTOMS IN FTD (Private)
Apr 1 2016 - Mar 31 2017
CENTER OF EXCELLENCE IN ALZHEIMER DISEASE (NYS) (NY State Gov)
Jul 1 2016 - Feb 28 2017
NEUROPHYSIOLOGICAL BIOMARKERS FOR AD DRUG DEVELOPMENT (Private)
Jan 15 2015 - Jan 15 2016
OLFACTORY DEFICITS IN MCI AS PREDICTOR OF IMPROVED COGNITION ON DONEPEZIL (Federal Gov)
Apr 1 2012 - Mar 31 2015
PILOT COMBINATION TRIAL OF MILD COGNITIVE IMPAIRMENT WITH DEPRESSION (Federal Gov)
Sep 1 2011 - Aug 31 2014
QUESTIONABLE DEMENTIA: COURSE AND PREDICTORS OF OUTCOME (Federal Gov)
Mar 1 2000 - May 31 2014
VASCULAR DEPRESSION IN AA: PHENOMENOLOGY, TREATMENT, AND COURSE OF ILLNESS (Federal Gov)
Jul 1 2010 - Jun 30 2013
COMPARATIVE SAFENESS AND EFFECTIVENESS OF ANTIPSYCHOTICS (Federal Gov)
Sep 30 2008 - Mar 31 2011
IN VIVO PET IMAGING OF MILD COGNITIVE IMPAIRMENT, EARLY ALZHEIMER''S DISEASE, OTHER DEMENTIAS AND HEALTHY ELDERLY... (Private)
Mar 1 2006 - Apr 30 2008