Laurel S. Mayer, MD

Board Certifications: 
Psychiatry
Profile Headshot

Overview

Academic Appointments

  • Associate Professor of Psychiatry at CUMC

Administrative Titles

  • Director, NYP House Staff Mental Health Service

Laurel Mayer, M.D. is Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She received a BA at Yale University and her MD degree at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Dr. Mayer's research interest currently focuses on using sophisticated eating behavior paradigms to evaluate eating behavior across the eating and weight disordered spectrum. Building on successful studies of eating behavior in anorexia nervosa, Dr. Mayer is currently exploring (1) the potential influence of the FTO gene on eating behavior and fronto-striatal brain circuits in healthy, normal weight kids, in order to potentially identify risk factors for later weight gain. (2) the potential biological correlates of weight suppression (the difference between one’s lifetime and current weight) in women with bulimia nervosa in order to test the hypothesis that higher levels of weight suppression and currently being on a diet to lose weight, will be independently associated with lower resting metabolic rate and lower levels of metabolic (e.g. thyroid), reproductive (e.g., estrogen) and appetitive (e.g., leptin) hormone levels among women with bulimia nervosa. (3) the utility of short-term residential laboratory-based measures in predicting the longer-term effects of pharmacologic agents in promoting weight loss. (4) measuring the influence of dietary macronutrients distributions (e.g. low carb compared to standard American) on intake and energy expenditure and (5) evaluating the weight gain and related metabolic side effects of second-generation antipsychotics. 

Hospital Affiliations

  • NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia

Gender

  • Female

Credentials & Experience

Education & Training

  • Albert Einstein College of Medicine - Yeshiva University
  • Residency: NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center
  • Fellowship: NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center

Board Certifications

  • Psychiatry

Research

Dr. Mayer's research interests include body composition, metabolic rate and neuroendocrine changes in women with anorexia nervosa. She is currently exploring the pattern of body fat distribution during weight normalization in women undergoing treatment for anorexia nervosa.

• Exploring the potential biological correlates of weight suppression (the difference between one’s lifetime and current weight) in order to test the hypothesis that higher levels of weight suppression and currently being on a diet to lose weight, will be independently associated with lower resting metabolic rate and lower levels of metabolic (e.g. thyroid), reproductive (e.g., estrogen) and appetitive (e.g., leptin) hormone levels among women with bulimia nervosa.

• Exploring the potential influence of the FTO gene on eating behavior and fronto-striatal brain circuits in healthy, normal weight kids, in order to examine whether risk factors for later weight gain are identifiable prior to the onset of obesity. Healthy kids undergo a number of procedures, including functional MRI and a laboratory lunch meal. Weight trajectories are then followed for two years after baseline participation.

• Determining the utility of short-term residential laboratory-based measures in predicting the longer-term effects of pharmacologic agents in promoting weight loss. Using a series of eating behavior, psychological and neurocognitive (including neuroimaging) assessments, we evaluate whether drug-placebo differences exist on these tasks, and whether the magnitude of these drug-placebo difference are predictive of treatment (weight loss) outcome.

• Using sophisticated eating behavior paradigms to measure the influence of dietary macronutrients (e.g. low carb compared to standard American) on intake and energy expenditure.

• To better understand the weight gain and related metabolic side effects of second-generation antipsychotics, in collaboration with the Lieber Center for Schizophrenia Research team, we are using the laboratory multiple-item meal paradigm to investigate changes in food intake, macronutrient distribution, and pre- and post-meal, self-reported hunger and satiety in participants randomized to placebo, iloperidone or olanzapine at baseline, 2 and 4 weeks of medication treatment.

Research Interests

  • Eating disorders

Grants

CSF NEUROPEPTIDE, HORMONAL AND METABOLOMIC ANALYSIS IN HUMAN ENERGY (Federal Gov)

Aug 1 2017 - Jul 31 2020

FUNCTIONAL IMAGING AND EATING BEHAVIOR AMONG FTO GENOTYPES IN PRE-OBESES CHILDREN (Federal Gov)

Sep 18 2013 - Aug 31 2019

COMPREHENSIVE CARE CENTER FOR EATING DISORDERS-METROPOLITAN REGION (NY State Gov)

Apr 1 2016 - Mar 31 2017

METABOLIC ADAPTATION AND CHANGES IN CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM CIRCUITRY IN WEIGHT-PERTURBED C57BL/6J MICE (Private)

Jun 16 2008 - Nov 30 2013

BODY COMPOSITION STUDIES AND EATING BEHAVIOR (Private)

Aug 22 2013 - Nov 21 2013

WEIGHT SUPPRESSION, DIETING AND BULIMIA NERVOSA: A BIOBEHAVIORAL STUDY (Federal Gov)

Aug 1 2012 - Sep 30 2013

Selected Publications

  • Mayer L, Walsh BT, Pierson RN Jr, Heymsfield SB, Gallagher D, Wang J, Parides MK, Leibel RL, Warren MP, Killory E, Glasofer D: Body fat redistribution after weight gain in women with anorexia nervosa.. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2005;81(6): 1286-1291
  • Mayer LES, Walsh BT: The use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors in the treatment of eating disorders.. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 1998;59 Supplement
  • Mayer L: Body composition and anorexia nervosa: does physiology explain psychology?. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2001;73(5): 851-2 (editorial)