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Research Hot Topics and Data Blitz


Alexandra Bey, MD, PhD; William Meyerson, MD, PhD; and Rick Wolthusen, MD, MPP

Alexandra Bey, MD, PhD is a child & adolescent psychiatry fellow whose research and clinical career is dedicated to improving the lives of those with neurodevelopmental disorders. She has been at Duke University since entering the MD-PhD program in 2008, through her residency in general psychiatry, and is in her final month of the child & adolescent psychiatry fellowship. While completing her clinical training, she has been conducting basic neuroscience research in Kafui Dzirasa's lab and clinical research in Geri Dawson's lab. Her overarching research goal is to develop objective, relevant biomarkers to allow for more effective development and testing of novel therapies and to conduct translational research across preclinical models and in individuals with neurodevelopmental differences. William Meyers, MD, PhD is a third year Duke Psychiatry resident in the Physician-Scientist Track. He obtained his medical degree and graduate degree in Computational Biology & Bioinformatics at the Yale School of Medicine. His current research at Duke with Rick Hoyle lies at the intersection between social media and mental health, using large-scale data analysis. Rick Wolthusen, MD, MPP is a 3rd-year psychiatry resident at Duke University. He has more than ten years of experience as a pro bono mental health consultant. He works with governments, NGOs, and academic centers in Ghana, Kenya, Germany, Ecuador, and the United States of America. He is the mind behind the Erasmus+ exchange program "Mental Health meets Social Innovation," through which students and staff members from universities in Ghana, Kenya, and Germany can learn from and with each other in an annual 8-week-long exchange program. Rick also founded the award-winning NGO On The Move e.V., which creates spaces of empowerment towards mentally healthier communities. The NGO activities were featured in podcasts, documentaries, publications, and a TEDxTalk. Rick is a member of the Clinician Scientist Track and the Clinician Educator Track at Duke; he was also a National Neuroscience Curriculum Initiative Fellow. He is currently an APA/APAF Public Psychiatry Fellow. Rick is a member of the APA Global Mental Health (GMH) and Psychiatry Caucus GMH Curriculum Workgroup and co-chairs the AGMHI's advocacy and policy workgroup since 2023. For his work in the global mental health space, he received the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. Link to join:


Health/Wellness, Lecture/Talk, Research