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    Joshua Woolley, MD, PhD

    TitleAssistant Professor
    SchoolUCSF School of Medicine
    DepartmentPsychiatry
    Address4150 Clement St
    San Francisco CA 94121
    Phone415-221-4810x4117
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      Collapse Biography 
      Collapse Education and Training
      University of California, San Francisco Residency School of Medicine2011
      University of California, San FranciscoM.D. School of Medicine2007
      University of California, San FranciscoPh.D. Graduate Division (Neuroscience)2005
      Brown University, Providence, RIBachelor of ScienceBiology and Philosophy1999

      Collapse Overview 
      Collapse Overview
      Dr. Woolley has been studying the underpinnings of social deficits in schizophrenia and has examined how oxytocin might be a useful treatment for these social deficits. People with schizophrenia often have functionally significant social cognitive deficits, and there are currently no available pharmacological treatments that target these deficits. In healthy individuals, the natural hormone oxytocin has been shown to increase social abilities such as understanding emotions and trusting people. People with schizophrenia can have difficulties with social relationships, which can impact interactions with others and community participation. Dr. Woolley believes that oxytocin may help with many of these difficulties, so a major focus of his research laboratory has been to examine whether supplementary oxytocin can increase social cognition in people with schizophrenia.

      In addition, Dr. Woolley is working with Dr. Sophia Vinogradov, a leading researcher in computerized cognitive training exercises for patients with schizophrenia, to assess the feasibility of delivering cognitive training on mobile devices. More recently, Dr. Woolley has begun to use MEG methods to study brain changes in individuals with schizophrenia.

      Building on his work with oxytocin and schizophrenia, Dr. Woolley collaborates with Dr. Wendy Berry Mendes and Dr. Danielle Schlosser at the University of California, San Francisco to analyze whether oxytocin can help dyadic family interactions where the child has been diagnosed with a mental illness. It can be stressful for families where one or more family members have mental illness. Family members can experience guilt, feelings of isolation, or other difficulties, and Dr. Woolley and his team hope that oxytocin can help mediate some of these emotionally challenging experiences and foster communication.

      Dr. Woolley is also working closely with Dr. David Kan and Dr. Steven Batki at the San Francisco VA Medical Center's ORT Clinic, where he focuses on whether oxytocin can be a useful adjunct to methadone treatment for overcoming opiate dependence.


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      Collapse Publications
      Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help.
      List All   |   Timeline
      1. Woolley JD, Arcuni PA, Stauffer CS, Fulford D, Carson DS, Batki S, Vinogradov S. The effects of intranasal oxytocin in opioid-dependent individuals and healthy control subjects: a pilot study. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2016 Jul; 233(13):2571-80. PMID: 27137199.
        View in: PubMed
      2. Mitchell JM, Arcuni PA, Weinstein D, Woolley JD. Intranasal Oxytocin Selectively Modulates Social Perception, Craving, and Approach Behavior in Subjects With Alcohol Use Disorder. J Addict Med. 2016 May-Jun; 10(3):182-9. PMID: 27159342.
        View in: PubMed
      3. Quintana DS, Woolley JD. Intranasal Oxytocin Mechanisms Can Be Better Understood, but Its Effects on Social Cognition and Behavior Are Not to Be Sniffed At. Biol Psychiatry. 2016 Apr 15; 79(8):e49-50. PMID: 26212900.
        View in: PubMed
      4. Woolley JD, Strobl EV, Sturm VE, Shany-Ur T, Poorzand P, Grossman S, Nguyen L, Eckart JA, Levenson RW, Seeley WW, Miller BL, Rankin KP. Impaired Recognition and Regulation of Disgust Is Associated with Distinct but Partially Overlapping Patterns of Decreased Gray Matter Volume in the Ventroanterior Insula. Biol Psychiatry. 2015 Oct 1; 78(7):505-14. PMID: 25890642; PMCID: PMC4529378 [Available on 10/01/16].
      5. Woolley JD, Lam O, Chuang B, Ford JM, Mathalon DH, Vinogradov S. Oxytocin administration selectively improves olfactory detection thresholds for lyral in patients with schizophrenia. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2015 Mar; 53:217-22. PMID: 25637811; PMCID: PMC4503321.
      6. Stauffer CS, Woolley JD. Can we bottle psychosocial treatments for addiction? The role of oxytocin. J Clin Psychiatry. 2014 Sep; 75(9):1028-9. PMID: 25295428.
        View in: PubMed
      7. Woolley JD, Chuang B, Lam O, Lai W, O'Donovan A, Rankin KP, Mathalon DH, Vinogradov S. Oxytocin administration enhances controlled social cognition in patients with schizophrenia. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2014 Sep; 47:116-25. PMID: 25001961; PMCID: PMC4280262.
      8. Woolley JD, Khan BK, Natesan A, Karydas A, Dallman M, Havel P, Miller BL, Rankin KP. Satiety-related hormonal dysregulation in behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia. Neurology. 2014 Feb 11; 82(6):512-20. PMID: 24415571; PMCID: PMC3937860.
      9. Daubenmier J, Lustig RH, Hecht FM, Kristeller J, Woolley J, Adam T, Dallman M, Epel E. A new biomarker of hedonic eating? A preliminary investigation of cortisol and nausea responses to acute opioid blockade. Appetite. 2014 Mar; 74:92-100. PMID: 24291355; PMCID: PMC4125886.
      10. Woolley JD, Strobl EV, Shelly WB, Karydas AM, Robin Ketelle RN, Wolkowitz OM, Miller BL, Rankin KP. BDNF serum concentrations show no relationship with diagnostic group or medication status in neurodegenerative disease. Curr Alzheimer Res. 2012 Sep; 9(7):815-21. PMID: 21605064; PMCID: PMC3176995.
      11. Khan BK, Woolley JD, Chao S, See T, Karydas AM, Miller BL, Rankin KP. Schizophrenia or neurodegenerative disease prodrome? Outcome of a first psychotic episode in a 35-year-old woman. Psychosomatics. 2012 May-Jun; 53(3):280-4. PMID: 22284422; PMCID: PMC3660996.
      12. Woolley JD, Khan BK, Murthy NK, Miller BL, Rankin KP. The diagnostic challenge of psychiatric symptoms in neurodegenerative disease: rates of and risk factors for prior psychiatric diagnosis in patients with early neurodegenerative disease. J Clin Psychiatry. 2011 Feb; 72(2):126-33. PMID: 21382304; PMCID: PMC3076589.
      13. Woolley J, Douglas VC, Cree BA. Neuromyelitis optica, psychiatric symptoms and primary polydipsia: a case report. Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2010 Nov-Dec; 32(6):648.e5-8. PMID: 21112466.
        View in: PubMed
      14. Woolley JD, Wilson MR, Hung E, Gorno-Tempini ML, Miller BL, Shim J. Frontotemporal dementia and mania. Am J Psychiatry. 2007 Dec; 164(12):1811-6. PMID: 18056235.
        View in: PubMed
      15. Woolley JD, Gorno-Tempini ML, Seeley WW, Rankin K, Lee SS, Matthews BR, Miller BL. Binge eating is associated with right orbitofrontal-insular-striatal atrophy in frontotemporal dementia. Neurology. 2007 Oct 2; 69(14):1424-33. PMID: 17909155.
        View in: PubMed
      16. Woolley JD, Lee BS, Kim B, Fields HL. Opposing effects of intra-nucleus accumbens mu and kappa opioid agonists on sensory specific satiety. Neuroscience. 2007 Jun 8; 146(4):1445-52. PMID: 17445988.
        View in: PubMed
      17. Woolley JD, Lee BS, Taha SA, Fields HL. Nucleus accumbens opioid signaling conditions short-term flavor preferences. Neuroscience. 2007 Apr 25; 146(1):19-30. PMID: 17320293.
        View in: PubMed
      18. Woolley JD, Lee BS, Fields HL. Nucleus accumbens opioids regulate flavor-based preferences in food consumption. Neuroscience. 2006 Nov 17; 143(1):309-17. PMID: 17049180.
        View in: PubMed
      19. Taha SA, Norsted E, Lee LS, Lang PD, Lee BS, Woolley JD, Fields HL. Endogenous opioids encode relative taste preference. Eur J Neurosci. 2006 Aug; 24(4):1220-6. PMID: 16925586.
        View in: PubMed
      20. Woolley JD, Gorno-Tempini ML, Werner K, Rankin KP, Ekman P, Levenson RW, Miller BL. The autonomic and behavioral profile of emotional dysregulation. Neurology. 2004 Nov 9; 63(9):1740-3. PMID: 15534273.
        View in: PubMed
      21. Gorno-Tempini ML, Rankin KP, Woolley JD, Rosen HJ, Phengrasamy L, Miller BL. Cognitive and behavioral profile in a case of right anterior temporal lobe neurodegeneration. Cortex. 2004 Sep-Dec; 40(4-5):631-44. PMID: 15505973.
        View in: PubMed
      22. Woolley JD. Buccofacial apraxia and the expression of emotion. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2003 Dec; 1000:395-401. PMID: 14766655.
        View in: PubMed
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