Principal Investigator

A photo portrait of Brian D'Onofrio

Brian M. D'Onofrio, Ph.D.


My research seeks to understand the etiology, assessment, and treatment of child and adolescent psychopathology using multiple designs, including quasi-experimental designs, longitudinal research, and intervention studies. My recent research has focused on using and combining several advanced epidemiologic approaches to better understand the consequences of perinatal risk factors, particularly medications during pregnancy, and the risks and benefits of psychiatric and pain medication for the individuals themselves. Furthermore, my research is focused on better understanding health disparities, particularly among vulnerable and marginalized groups of individuals. Most of my research consists of secondary data analysis of large datasets (e.g., national Swedish datasets, datasets of 30,000 twin pairs in Sweden, and health insurance claims datasets in the United States). I also conduct intervention and health services research, which is currently focused on how to best assess behavioral health problems in community settings, including primary care clinics, behavioral health clinics, emergency departments, educational institutions, and criminal justice settings.

Curriculum Vitae Google Scholar

Affiliated Investigators

A photo portrait of Patrick Quinn

Patrick D. Quinn, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Department of Applied Health Science

Adjunct Appointment, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

I study the causes and consequences of substance use. My research ranges across substances (e.g., from cigarette smoking to opioids) and across the lifespan (e.g., from prenatal drug exposure to medication treatment for ADHD in adults).

Much of my current research examines pain and its management with opioid medications, using longitudinal data on individuals and families and methods from epidemiology and behavioral genetics. I am also interested in understanding the risks and benefits of other medications that have the potential for abuse (e.g., ADHD medications).

From 2014 to 2018, I was a postdoctoral researcher in the Developmental Psychopathology Lab, and I am still an active collaborator with the lab. I received my doctorate in clinical psychology from The University of Texas at Austin and completed my APA-accredited pre-doctoral internship at the Indiana University School of Medicine.

Note. I am available to serve as a primary advisor for doctoral students in the Clinical Science Program.


A photo portrait of Tennisha Riley

Tennisha Riley, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Department of Counseling and Educational Psychology

I am an adolescent researcher with a focus on understanding the emotional development of Black youth, examining how Black youth’s social context (family, friends, school) influence emotion expression and emotion regulation, as well as the role emotion expression and emotion regulation play in Black youth’s decisions to engage in both risk-related and prosocial behaviors. My research seeks to expand our foundational knowledge of adolescent emotional development and situate that knowledge within a sociocultural context for Black youth.

B.E.I.n.G Research Team Website

Doctoral Students

A photo portrait of Emma Cleary

Emma N. Cleary

My current research projects focus on prescribed opioid medications, both for management of pain and treatment of opioid use disorder. I am particularly interested in studying the safety of these medications during pregnancy, including consequences for child development, such as risk for adverse birth outcomes and neurodevelopmental disorders. My work utilizes large datasets and epidemiologic methods to help disentangle effects of opioid medications from effects of other factors that may be associated with adverse outcomes, including genetic and environmental factors, and indication for prescription opioid use. Before joining the Developmental Psychopathology Lab in 2020, I received my BA in Psychology and Modern Foreign Language from Syracuse University and worked as a project coordinator at Penn State.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Linnea Sepe-Forrest

Linnea Sepe-Forrest

The primary aim of my research is to understand the impacts of prescription and recreational drug use on the development of severe mental illnesses. I am especially interested in understanding how early antipsychotic use may be either protective or harmful against later psychopathology outcomes. In my current projects, I am using large datasets to measure how different types of drug use during youth influence risk for psychiatric hospitalizations. Before joining Indiana University, I received my BS in Neuroscience at UCLA and worked as a post-bac in the National Institute of Mental Health under Dr. Allison Nugent.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Marianne Chirica

Marianne Chirica

Broadly, my research aims to identify potential risk and protective factors for anxiety and suicidal behavior, particularly among at-risk patients, in attempt to better understand and predict adverse outcomes. Using a developmental psychopathology framework, my research assesses various units of analysis across the lifespan, such as behavioral (i.e., suicidal behavior), sociocultural (i.e., racial and ethnic differences) and biological (i.e., medications used) markers that interact both cross-sectionally and temporally to predict developmental trajectories. My current research project focuses on evaluating the association between prescription benzodiazepine use and suicidal behavior. This work will ultimately help identify those at heightened risk for suicide and suggest potential targets for interventions. Before joining the Developmental Psychopathology Lab in 2021, I received my MS degree in Psychology: Clinical Counseling from Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science and am a licensed professional counselor.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Alynna Summit

Alynna Summit

I received my B.A. in Psychology in 2019 and my M.A. in Psychological Science in 2021 at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Currently, I am a Health Behavior doctoral student at Indiana University's School of Public Health. My research interests encompass aspects of substance use. Specifically, I am interested in prescription drug use and misuse. Previously, I studied prescription stimulant misuse among college students, with a primary focus on how college students perceive other college students who misuse prescription stimulants. Now, my work has shifted focus to prescription opioid use among individuals experiencing chronic pain. With this research, I am interested in predictors of adverse outcomes related to prescription opioid use for chronic pain management, as well as the development of statistical models to measure these outcomes. I am also interested in aspects of mental health and the stigmatization of substance use.

Curriculum Vitae

Undergraduate and Post-Baccalaureate Research Assistants

A photo portrait of Sydney Adams

Sydney M. Adams

I am an IU alum and a current post-bacc research assistant in the DPL. I’m interested in using approaches from psychiatric epidemiology to examine risk and protective processes that contribute to self-harming behaviors, substance use problems, and related conditions across development. I am particularly interested in research focused on neurodevelopmental conditions, such as ADHD, as well as research that helps to understand and improve health inequities. As an undergraduate, I completed an honors thesis studying racial-ethnic differences in ADHD treatment during adolescence and emerging adulthood. I currently help with projects using real-world healthcare data to evaluate the risks and benefits of psychotropic medication use. After my time as a research assistant, I plan to pursue a Ph.D. in clinical psychology.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Logan Gillenwater

Logan Gillenwater

I graduated with a BS in clinical psychological science in 2023. I now work as a project management specialist for the Health and Justice Lab at the IU School of Medicine. In that role, I lead a project investigating the implementation of enhanced surveillance systems on policy and program recommendations from Overdose Fatality Review teams. I also assist on various other projects at the intersection of justice systems and behavioral health care. My research interests include implementation science, public policy, justice-involved populations, externalizing disorders, and the etiology of psychopathology. I intend to pursue a doctoral degree in clinical psychology and ultimately a career in psychological research.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Prabhvir Lakhan

Prabhvir Lakhan

I am a neuroscience major in my senior year. I aim to attend medical school after graduating from IU. I work with Dr. Lauren Rutter and my research focuses on how affect variability and instability correlate with depression and anxiety. I will be doing an honors thesis this year which will examine affect inertia and its correlation with future depression symptoms. In my free time, I enjoy going to the gym, cooking, and spending too much time thinking about the Colts and US Soccer.


A photo portrait of Casey Biggerman

Casey Biggerman

I am a junior here at Indiana University, currently studying psychology and creating my own major: Psychopharmacology With An Emphasis on Substance Use And Psychedelic Treatment. My studies currently revolve around understanding and revolutionizing current mental health treatment with the utilization of various therapeutic tools. Destigmitization and education in psychoactive substances is my research priority, and the dissemination of that information to the public to restructure drug policy is my career goal.

Research and Data Scientists

A photo portrait of Martin Rickert

Martin E. Rickert, Ph.D.

I have an extensive background in scientific research with specific expertise and interests in data modeling, statistical estimation and technical computing. Recently, my efforts have focused on using genetically-informed, quasi-experimental designs to explore the scope and specificity of risk factors for adverse birth outcomes, neurodevelopmental disorders, severe adult psychopathology, cognitive/intellectual functioning, and long-term, social outcomes. A key component of my work in the lab and in collaboration with database experts in Sweden involves solving "big" data issues. This includes [1] developing algorithms and writing the software needed to extract and integrate information from the population registers and [2] implementing scripts that enable us to fit complex models (e.g., cross-classified random effects, survival models with time-varying covariates, etc) on Karolinska's computational servers that support data-intensive, high-performance computing tasks.

Research Gate Profile

A photo portrait of Richard Meraz

Richard F. Meraz

Research Data Engineering Lead

I have held a range of technical, leadership, and consulting roles in the public and private sectors. I currently lead the data engineering efforts in the lab using large observational health data sets. I also consult with the Office of the Vice Provost to support campus-wide projects related to research data in the health sciences.


Laboratory Alumni

A photo portrait of Lauren O'Reily

Lauren M. O'Reilly

I am interested in studying the etiology of suicidal behavior in adolescence through adulthood. To do so, I analyze longitudinal, population-based registers from Sweden and use genetically-informed designs to examine the extent to which genetic and environmental factors are associated with suicidal behaviors. These large databases and designs allow for the examination of causal relations between previously explored risk factors and later suicidal behavior. I am currently working on three main areas of research: 1) the intergenerational transmission of suicidal behavior using a Children of Siblings and Twins design, 2) the association between a variety of psychosocial risk factors (e.g., aggression and bullying) and suicidal behavior in an adolescent twin sample, and 3) short-term risk factors for suicidal behavior post-contact with outpatient specialists. I am also interested in how macro-level policy changes interact with suicidal behavior, including the Affordable Care Act young adult mandate and parity legislation.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Kelsey Wiggs

Kelsey Wiggs

I am broadly interested in the etiology and treatment of neurodevelopmental problems (e.g. symptoms of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, seizures, and autism spectrum disorders) across multiple levels of analysis and time scales. In the Developmental Psychopathology lab at IU, I work with Dr. Brian D’Onofrio on two main areas of research using quasi-experimental designs and large longitudinal data sets. The first examines the extent to which perinatal risk factors impact neurodevelopmental problems. The second assesses the safety of medications independent of stable genetic and environmental factors within an individual. Current projects examine 1) the association between prenatal exposure to antiepileptic drugs and offspring birth defects, ADHD, and ASD, 2) the association between ADHD medication use and psychosis, and 3) the association between antidepressant use and seizures.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Ayesha Sujan

Ayesha C. Sujan, Ph.D.

Ayesha Sujan, PhD, is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research specializing in maternal mental health and substance use. She completed her doctoral training in the Department of Psychological and Brian Sciences at Indiana University – Bloomington and her clinical internship at the Medical University of South Carolina. Though her doctoral training focused on clinical psychology, her training spanned multiple disciplines, including developmental psychology, epidemiology, and pharmacology. She also received her master's degree in Human Development from Cornell University and did her undergraduate studies at Tulane University where she double majored in psychology and studio art.

Broadly speaking, she conducts translational research focused on preventing early exposure to risk factors from having adverse consequences on child development. Her research initially focused on early-life adversities, particularly abuse and neglect, and then expanded to include the prenatal period. Though she studies the consequences of a number of pregnancy-related risk factors, including early and advancing maternal age at childbearing and short and long interpregnancy interval, her work mainly focuses on in-utero exposure to psychoactive substances (e.g., antidepressants, opioids, and cannabis) and risk for adverse birth outcomes (e.g., preterm birth) and neurodevelopmental problems (e.g., autism spectrum disorder and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder).

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Erikka Vaughan

Erikka B. Vaughan, Ph.D.

I am broadly interested in the etiology of depression in children and adolescents. While research has highlighted an array of risk factors for depression, I am interested in learning more about the specific mechanisms by which these risk factors result in depression in some adolescents and not in others. As there is empirical evidence for an association between pubertal timing and outcomes of depression in adolescence, I am currently working on a project examining predictors of variations in age of menarche in girls. In examining these factors, I am utilizing a longitudinal design with a large, nationally representative sample.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Quetzal Class

Quetzal A. Class, Ph.D.

I am an Assistant Professor at University of IL, Chicago School of Medicine. I investigate the long-term ramifications of insults that occur immediately before and during pregnancy on the mother and baby. I am currently investigating the impact of inpatient psychiatric admission during pregnancy on birth and obstetric outcomes. I am also working to investigate cannabis exposure in utero. I serve as the Director of Resident Research and love supporting OBGYN residents through all steps of the research process.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Claire Coyne

Claire A. Coyne, Ph.D.

My primary research interest is the etiology of childhood and adolescent antisocial behavior and the pronounced sex difference in antisocial behavior that persists from childhood into adulthood. I am interested in the genetic and environmental influences on sex differences in the development of antisocial behavior, as well as exploring sex differences in sensitivity and exposure to risk factors, and the role of sex-specific risk factors for antisocial behavior. I am also interested in the possible causal relationships between teenage childbearing and offspring antisocial behaviors. My research uses genetically informative and longitudinal approaches to study the causal associations between various putative risk factors and antisocial behavior.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Kelly Donahue

Kelly L. Donahue, Ph.D.

I am an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the Indiana University School of Medicine and a licensed clinical psychologist. I currently serve as the Director of Riley Hospital for Children's Gender Health Program, which is a clinical care program that includes providers in the fields of adolescent medicine, endocrinology, nursing, psychology, social work, and nutrition. I also provide direct patient care in the form of psychological evaluation and support services to gender-diverse children, adolescents, young adults, and their families. Although my position is primarily clinical, I am also actively involved in multidisciplinary research efforts (primarily focused on the well-being and healthcare experiences of gender-diverse youth and families) and in education and training activities, such as clinical supervision of psychology trainees, clinical precepting of medical fellows, and teaching learners across healthcare professions about LGBTQ+ inclusive healthcare practices and gender-affirming care for young people.

Curriculum Vitae

A photo portrait of Alice Schermerhorn

Alice C. Schermerhorn, Ph.D.

My research interests are in the area of developmental psychopathology and focus on associations between exposure to stressors like interparental conflict and children’s socio-emotional development and adjustment. I investigate temperament to identify which children are at greatest risk in the context of stress. My research also seeks to identify mechanisms underlying the stress-adjustment problems relationship, such as neural processes and cortisol reactivity. In addition, my research examines transactional associations between stress and child behavior, including whether children exacerbate (or even alleviate) stress in their environments.

Website Curriculum Vitae