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Peter L. Strick, Ph.D., Named Chair of Department of Neurobiology at Pitt School of Medicine

PITTSBURGH, Sep. 4, 2012 – The Department of Neurobiology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine will have a new leader as of Oct. 1.
Peter L. Strick, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Neurobiology, succeeds as department chair Susan Amara, Ph.D., who will become scientific director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health.
“While it will be hard to say goodbye to Dr. Amara, I am delighted to have a scientist of Dr. Strick’s caliber ready to take over the leadership of the Department of Neurobiology,” said Arthur S. Levine, M.D., senior vice chancellor for the health sciences and dean, School of Medicine. “He is a leading expert – if not the leading expert – on the neural basis of movement and cognition. He pioneered the use of viruses to track circuits in the central nervous system, and it is this body of work especially that led to his recent election to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.”
Dr. Strick also holds the Endowed Chair of Systems Neuroscience and is director of the Systems Neuroscience Institute and  co-director of the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition at Pitt and Carnegie Mellon University; a leader of the Center for Military Medicine Research; and a senior VA research career scientist at the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System. He was interim chair of the neurobiology department from 2001 to 2003.
“It’s an exciting time in neuroscience at the University of Pittsburgh,” Dr. Strick said. “I am thrilled to be in a position where I can facilitate the careers of young people and enable cutting edge research.”
Dr. Strick received his doctorate in anatomy and his undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Pennsylvania. Before joining Pitt in 2000, he worked at NIMH, the VA Medical Center in Syracuse and at the State University of New York (SUNY)-Upstate Medical Center.

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