Fourth Barondes Lecture to be held September 13

By Nicholas Roznovsky


Former UCSF faculty member and current Stanford University neuroscientist Robert C. Malenka, MD, PhD, will be featured as the visiting lecturer for the 2022 Samuel Barondes Lecture in Biological Psychiatry.

Following a two-year pause due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the UCSF Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences is pleased to announce the return of its special distinguished visiting lectureship series highlighting the integration of biological sciences and psychiatry in honor of Jeanne and Sanford Robertson Endowed Chair and Chair Emeritus Samuel Barondes, MD.

The fourth Samuel Barondes Lecture in Biological Psychiatry will be held virtually via Zoom at 3 p.m. PDT on Tuesday, September 13, 2022. This year's lectureship recipient is noted Stanford University neuroscientist Robert C. Malenka, MD, PhD, who will deliver the keynote address, “From Synapses to Serotonin and Sociability.”

This event is free and open to the public, although attendees should keep in mind that the talk will be geared towards a scientific and medical professional audience. Advance registration is required.

About Robert C. Malenka, MD, PhD

Robert C. Malenka, MD, PhD, is the Pritzker Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, director of the Nancy Pritzker Laboratory, and deputy director of the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute at Stanford University. After graduating from Harvard College, he received an MD and a PhD in neuroscience from the Stanford University School of Medicine in 1983. Over the ensuing six years, he completed residency training in psychiatry at Stanford and four years of postdoctoral research at UC San Francisco. In 1989, Malenka was appointed as an assistant professor of psychiatry and physiology at UCSF, reaching the rank of full professor in 1996. In addition to running an active research program at UCSF, he directed the Center for the Neurobiology of Addiction and served as the associate director of the Center for Neurobiology and Psychiatry. He returned to the Stanford University School of Medicine in 1999.

Malenka is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine, as well as an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology. He has served on the National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse and as a councilor for the Society for Neuroscience and the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, and is on the scientific advisory boards of numerous non-profit foundations and biotechs. He has been the recipient of several awards including the Society for Neuroscience Young Investigator Award (1993), the Daniel Efron Award from the American College of Neuropsychopharmacolgoy (1998), the Kemali Foundation International Prize in Neuroscience (2000), the CINP-Lilly Neuroscience Basic Research Award (2002), the Perl/UNC Neuroscience Prize (2006), the NARSAD Goldman-Rakic Prize for Outstanding Neuroscience Research (2010), the Pasarow Foundation Award for Extraordinary Accomplishment in Neuropsychiatry Research (2011), and the Society for Neuroscience Julius Axelrod Prize (2016).

His papers, which have been cited over 100,000 times, have provided foundational knowledge about the mechanisms of synaptic plasticity and modulation in the mammalian brain. Malenka's laboratory continues to conduct research on the molecular mechanisms of neural communication, as well as the role of circuit dysfunction in brain disorders including addiction, Alzheimer’s, autism, and depression.

About Samuel Barondes, MD


The official department portrait of Samuel Barondes, MD, the Jeanne and Sanford Robertson Endowed Chair and Chair Emeritus.

Samuel Barondes, MD, was educated at Columbia and Harvard and learned to do research at the National Institutes of Health as a postdoc with Gordon Tomkins and with Marshall Nirenberg, in whose laboratory he contributed to the Nobel Prize-winning studies that deciphered the genetic code.

Thereafter, Barondes devoted himself to integrating psychiatry with molecular biology and neuroscience. He has been a professor at the University of California since 1969, first at UC San Diego, where he was a founding member of the Department of Psychiatry and the Neuroscience Program and, since 1986 at UC San Francisco, where he initially served as chair of the Department of Psychiatry and director of the Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute. Since 1994, he has served as the Jeanne and Sanford Robertson Endowed Chair and Director of the Center for Neurobiology and Psychiatry. Throughout his time at UCSF, Barondes chaired the Chancellor’s Art Committee, overseeing the acquisition and commissioning of hundreds of works, with special emphasis on the J. Michael Bishop Collection at Mission Bay.

Barondes is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 1976, he was a founder of the McKnight Neuroscience Program, and served as its president for 10 years. His books include Cellular Dynamics of the Neuron (1969); Neuronal Recognition (1976); Molecules and Mental Illness (1993); Mood Genes (1998); Better Than Prozac (2003); Making Sense of People (2011, 2016); and Before I Sleep: Poems For Children Who Think (2014).

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About UCSF Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

The UCSF Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and the Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute are among the nation's foremost resources in the fields of child, adolescent, adult, and geriatric mental health. Together they constitute one of the largest departments in the UCSF School of Medicine and the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, with a mission focused on research (basic, translational, clinical), teaching, patient care, and public service.

UCSF Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences conducts its clinical, educational, and research efforts at a variety of locations in Northern California, including the UCSF Nancy Friend Pritzker Psychiatry BuildingUCSF Langley Porter Psychiatric Hospital; UCSF Medical Centers at Parnassus Heights, Mission Bay, and Mount Zion; UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals in San Francisco and Oakland; Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center; the San Francisco VA Health Care System; UCSF Fresno; and numerous community-based sites around the San Francisco Bay Area.

About the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences

The UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, established by the extraordinary generosity of Joan and Sanford I. "Sandy" Weill, brings together world-class researchers with top-ranked physicians to solve some of the most complex challenges in the human brain.

The UCSF Weill Institute leverages UCSF’s unrivaled bench-to-bedside excellence in the neurosciences. It unites three UCSF departments—Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Neurology, and Neurological Surgery—that are highly esteemed for both patient care and research, as well as the Neuroscience Graduate Program, a cross-disciplinary alliance of nearly 100 UCSF faculty members from 15 basic-science departments, as well as the UCSF Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases, a multidisciplinary research center focused on finding effective treatments for Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and other neurodegenerative disorders.

About UCSF

The University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) is exclusively focused on the health sciences and is dedicated to promoting health worldwide through advanced biomedical research, graduate-level education in the life sciences and health professions, and excellence in patient care. UCSF Health, which serves as UCSF’s primary academic medical center, includes top-ranked specialty hospitals and other clinical programs, and has affiliations throughout the Bay Area.