Valerie Sydnor

PhD Student


Brown University

Valerie obtained her degree in Human Biology in 2015 from Brown University. Passionate about improving treatment outcomes in psychiatry, Valerie conducted research on psychotropic polypharmacy in an inpatient hospital while an undergrad at Brown. Post-graduation she joined Martha Shenton’s Psychiatry Neuroimaging Lab, where she applied microstructural diffusion imaging techniques to investigate mood disorder etiology and the antidepressant neurological mechanisms of ketamine treatment. Now a first year Ph.D. student in the Neuroscience Graduate Group, Valerie is harnessing glutamate chemical exchange saturation transfer imaging (GluCEST!) to study glutamatergic disruptions in depression and psychosis and their relationship to dimensional clinical symptoms. She has already published two first-author papers at Penn with close collaborator David Roalf.

Things Valerie loves: donuts, Harry Potter, running, pigs, nature, coffee, coding, Alice in Wonderland, craft beer, and brains.

Fun Facts

    Valerie's dream job is to be a Ravenclaw Prefect

    Valerie reached her academic peak in seventh grade when she memorized 280 digits of pi

    Valerie ran her first (and only) half marathon in the city of brotherly love

Lifespan Informatics and Neuroimaging Center

Richards Research Labs, 5th Floor

3700 Hamilton Walk

Philadelphia, PA 19104