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Patricia A. BrennanDepartment Chair and Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor of Psychology


Dr. Brennan received her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1986, and her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Southern California in 1992. She has been a member of the Emory University psychology department since 1996.


  • PSYC 211: Child Psychopathology
  • PSYC 340: Crime & Criminal Behavior
  • PSYC 341: The Psychology of Evil
  • PSYC 386W: Cross Cultural Studies in Psychology Research
  • PSYC 387W: Advanced Cross Cultural Studies in Psychology Research
  • PSYC 542: Research Methods in Clinical Psychology
  • PSYC 580: History of Modern Psychology



Biological, psychological, and social risk factors for internalizing and externalizing disorders from a developmental psychopathology perspective. Perinatal maternal health, psychosocial stress and trauma, and intergenerational transmission of risk.

Research Areas

My current research projects are focused on maternal stress and infant and child neurodevelopment, perinatal risk factors including maternal depression and environmental exposures, and biological mechanisms of intergenerational transmission including epigenetics, brain function, HPA axis regulation, immune function, and the gut microbiome. Several of our current research projects are also focused on the study and prevention of maternal child health disparities.


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