Dr. Juan Lopez

Dr. Lopez

Dr. Juan F. Lopez is an Associate Professor at the University of Michigan Department of Psychiatry, and an Associate Research Scientist at the Molecular and Behavioral Neuroscience Institute.

 Dr. Lopez is a clinician-scientist, an academic psychiatrist with an active clinical practice. Dr. Lopez has extensive experience in the pharmacological and psychotherapeutic treatment of mood and anxiety disorders. His clinical practice centers on depressive disorders, with a dual focus on treatment resistant depression and perinatal psychiatry. Currently, Dr. Lopez is an Attending Physician in the Psychiatric Perinatal Clinic. He also does consultations and second opinions for patients with chronic depression who have failed to respond to multiple treatments.

Dr. Lopez has been involved in basic, translational, and clinical research related to the neurobiology of depression since his psychiatric residency. By combining animal and human studies, Dr. Lopez’s research has demonstrated that stress hormones can modulate gene expression of serotonin brain molecules thought to be involved in the pathophysiology of mood disorders. The significance of these findings is that they point to a possible mechanism as to how stress can trigger, or worsen, depressive symptoms in vulnerable individuals. Dr. Lopez has also shown that stress hormones can interfere with the effects of antidepressants in the brain, suggesting that this is one of the reasons why some patients with depression fail to respond to antidepressant treatment.

Dr. Lopez has a history of independent federal funding in the area of mood disorders. He has served in Study Sections at the National Institute of Health, has reviewed multiple clinical, basic, and translational research grants over the years, and has participated in multicenter clinical trials. In addition, Dr. Lopez has extensive experience in the administration and interpretation of diagnostic interviews and other clinical research tools. Dr. Lopez has been the recipient of several research awards, including the Society of Biological Psychiatry A.E. Bennet Award and a NARSAD Young Investigator Award. He has also served in various national advisory committees, including the Board of Scientific Counselors of the National Institute of Mental Health, and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance National Advisory Board. 

Dr. Lopez is also committed to teaching the next generations of clinicians and brain researchers. Over the years, he has mentored and supervised undergraduate, graduate students, medical students, psychiatric and neurology residents, and research fellows. Dr. Lopez also believes in empowering and educating patients and consumers of mental health services. Through his career, he has given multiple presentations to community and patient-advocacy groups.