Who We Are

Translational Research on Affective Disorders and Suicide Laboratory

Randy P. Auerbach

Randy P. Auerbach, Ph.D., ABPP

Principal Investigator
Associate Professor

Randy P. Auerbach, PhD, ABPP, is an Associate Professor in the Division of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry in the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University and the Division of Clinical Developmental Neuroscience, Sackler Institute. Additionally, he serves as co-director for the WHO, World Mental Health Initiative College Mental Health Project. Dr. Auerbach received his BA from Cornell University (2000) and PhD in clinical psychology from McGill University (2010). Dr. Auerbach’s research is committed to improving our understanding of depression and suicide in adolescents. His research is multidisciplinary and utilizes a multimodal approach for assessment (e.g., laboratory-based experiments, EEG/ERPs, fMRI) to determine why depressive symptoms unfold, how self-injurious and suicidal behaviors develop, and what changes in the brain during treatment. As a whole, the research aims to better understand the putative mechanisms that may improve early identification of and treatment for adolescent depression and suicidal behaviors. This work is funded by grants from the National Institute of Mental Health, Klingenstein Third Generation Foundation, Dana Foundation: Clinical Neuroscience Research Grant, and several private foundations, and to date, it has resulted in over 100 published scientific papers and book chapters. Dr. Auerbach is the recipient of a number of awards including the David Shakow Early Career Award for Distinguished Scientific Contributions in Clinical Psychology, the Richard Abidin Early Career Award, the Theodore Blau Early Career Award, and the Career Development Leadership Award from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.

Erik Benau

Erik Benau, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Dr. Erik Benau graduated from Hampshire College with a bachelor’s degree in cognitive science, from the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia with a master’s in Health Psychology, and from the University of Kansas with a PhD in clinical psychology. Dr. Benau’s research primarily focuses on cognitive and neural underpinnings of emotional processing in anxiety, depression, and self-harm behaviors.