Our goal is to understand the neurobiological basis of disorders emerging in childhood and adolescence, including psychotic disorders. Our studies investigate these disorders longitudinally, within the context of brain maturation. We seek to understand the pattern and timing of changes as these disorders emerge and become established; and to identify neurobiological, neuropsychological and genetic markers of these illnesses. This will improve early (pre-illness) detection and diagnosis, and provide novel mechanisms for treatment.

Naveen Thomas (Research Psychiatrist)

Mahesh Jayaram (Research Psychiatrist)

Antonia Merritt (Research Coordinator)

Parsa Ravanfar (PhD Candidate)

Dr Warda Syeda (Research Fellow)

Ali Stevens (Research Assistant)

Dr Liliana Laskaris (Research Fellow)

Dr Cassandra Wannan (Research Fellow)

Georgia Caruana (PhD Candidate)
Dr James Karantonis (Lab Manager)
Rebecca Cooper (PhD Candidate)
Dr Sean Carruthers (Research Fellow)
Dr Sandra Luza (Research Fellow)
Ulysse Thivisol (PhD Candidate)


Lisa Furlong (PhD Candidate)

Reuben Dyer (PhD Candidate)

Megan Thomas (PhD Candidate)

Elysha Ringin (PhD Candidate)


This Program will build on previous pioneering work in order to address the following:

1. Improving understanding of how drugs interact with G-Protein Coupling Receptors (GPCRs) to achieve diverse pharmacology.

2. Improving understanding of the link between receptor and cellular behaviour, signaling and disease efficacy.

3. Increasing understanding of drivers of disease, to better treat specific symptom domains and increase understanding of the interplay of disease context on drug responses.

This Program of work will run for 5 years, with the MNC leading multiple projects relating to translational biology. Specifically, the Program aims to map brain-structure-function relationships and molecular signatures across developmental stages, the impact of insults at each of the stages, and the appropriate choice of pharmacological intervention to ameliorate their impact. 

Funding: NHMRC Program Grant


Frontal-striatal cognitive deficits in patients with chronic schizophrenia. (1997) C Pantelis, TR Barnes, HE Nelson, S Tanner, L Weatherley, AM Owen, ... Brain, 120 (10), 1823-1843.

Neuroanatomical abnormalities before and after onset of psychosis: a cross-sectional and longitudinal MRI comparison, C Pantelis, D Velakoulis, ... McGuire, P. (2003) Lancet, 361 (9354), 281-288.

Structural brain imaging evidence for multiple pathological processes at different stages of brain development in schizophrenia. (2005) C Pantelis, M Yücel, SJ Wood, D Velakoulis, ... Schizophr bull, 31 (3), 672-696.

Hippocampal and amygdala volumes according to psychosis stage and diagnosis: A magnetic resonance imaging study of chronic schizophrenia, first-episode psychosis, and ultra–high-risk individuals. (2006) D Velakoulis, SJ Wood, MTH Wong, PD McGorry, ... C Pantelis Arch gen psychiatry 63 (2), 139-149.

Progressive gray matter reduction of the superior temporal gyrus during transition to psychosis. (2009) T Takahashi, SJ Wood, AR Yung, B Soulsby, PD McGorry, M Suzuki, ... C Pantelis. Archives of general psychiatry 66 (4), 366-376.

Delayed development of brain connectivity in adolescents with schizophrenia and their unaffected siblings. (2015) A Zalesky, C Pantelis, ..., JL Rapoport, N Gogtay. JAMA psychiatry, 72 (9), 900-908.

Accelerated gray and white matter deterioration with age in schizophrenia. (2016) VL Cropley, ..., C Pantelis*, A Zalesky*, Am J Psychiatry, 174 (3), 286-295.

PET imaging of putative microglial activation in individuals at ultra-high risk for psychosis, recently diagnosed and chronically ill with schizophrenia. (2017) MA Di Biase, A Zalesky, ..., C. Pantelis*, V Cropley*, Transl psychiatry, 7 (8), e1225.

Role of positive parenting in the association between neighborhood social disadvantage and brain development across adolescence. (2017) S Whittle, .., C Pantelis, .., JAMA psychiatry, 74 (8), 824-832.

Fragility and volatility of structural hubs in the human connectome. (2018) LL Gollo, JA Roberts, VL Cropley, MA Di Biase, C Pantelis, A Zalesky, M Breakspear. Nature neuroscience 21 (8), 1107.