About This Study

About The Genomics of Electroconvulsive Therapy (GenECT) Study

This research study is supported by the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH).

It is led by principal investigators at the Johns Hopkins University and the University of North Carolina, and it is being carried out in collaboration with ECT centers across the United States. The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine Institutional Review Board (IRB) is the IRB of record for the study.

In addition to the lead principal investigators, each ECT center participating in the study has a site lead investigator (see below).


The leadership team will supervise the Coordinating Center activities, ensure NIH reporting requirements are met, and oversee relationships with the other study sites, their principal  investigators and the NIH. The team includes:

Peter Zandi, PhD, MHS, MPH

Principal Investigator, Johns Hopkins University

Dr. Zandi is Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Dr. Zandi is the Arlene and Robert Kogod Professor of Mood Disorders in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences in the School of Medicine. Additionally, he is Co-Director of Research for the Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Mood Disorders Center and vice-chair of research for the Department of Mental Health. Dr. Zandi received a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Pennsylvania and a PhD in psychiatric epidemiology from the Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Dr. Zandi is an international leader in statistical genetics and genetic epidemiology studies of psychiatric disorders. He leads several large, multi-site genetics studies of mood disorders, and has joined national collaborators to identify genetic risk factors for autism and panic disorder, and to assess Alzheimer’s disease therapies. 

Dr. Zandi’s research has been supported by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the National Institute on Aging, and the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation. He directs the NIMH-supported Psychiatric Epidemiology Training Program to prepare the next generation to use big data to study mental illnesses. He ls the recipient of a number of awards, including the Harold and Syvia Halpert Award and the Morton Kramer Award for the Application of Biostatistics and Epidemiology in Research on the Prevention and Control of Mental Disorders.

Dr. Patrick Sullivan, MD, FRANZCP

Principal Investigator, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Dr. Sullivan is the Yeargen Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Genetics at the University of North Carolina, where he also is Director of the Center for Psychiatric Genomics. Dr. Sullivan also is a professor at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden.

 His lab investigates the molecular genetics of schizophrenia, major depressive disorder (including postpartum depression), eating disorders, and autism. With funding from the Departments of Genetics and Psychiatry, he has recently launched the UNC Center for Psychiatric Genomics. Dr. Sullivan is a founder and the lead principal investigator of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium, the largest consortium in the history of psychiatry. He is involved in a wide range of genomic studies of human diseases and has multiple NIH grants. Dr. Sullivan has published over 320 papers and 40 reviews/chapters.


Brian Mickey
University of Utah
Salt Lake City, UT

Mahendra Bhati
Stanford University
Palo Alto, CA

Eric Achtyes
Pine Rest Christian
Grand Rapids, MI

William McDonald
Emory University
Atlanta, GA

Khurshid Khurshid
University of Massachusetts
Worcester, MA

Kevin Reeves
The Ohio State University
Columbus, OH

Brent Carr
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL

Salih Selek
UT Houston
Houston, TX

Kerry Ressler
McLean Hospital
Belmont, MA

Thomas Nickl-Jockschat
University of Iowa
Iowa City, IA

Todd Lencz
Georgios Petrides
Northwell Hofstra University
Glen Oaks, Queens, NY

Gerard Sanacora
Sina Nikayin

Yale University
New Haven, CT

Susan Conroy
Indiana University
Indianapolis, IN

Erica Richards
JHU Sibley
Washington, DC

James Murrough
Mount Sinai
New York, NY

Kala Bailey
UT Southwestern
Dallas, TX

Murat Altinay
Cleveland Clinic
Cleveland, OH

Jesse Wright
University of Louisville
Louisville, KY