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Department of Psychiatry

Department of Psychology

Dr. Amanda Law

Amanda Jayne Law, Ph.D.

RC1 North, Room 8101

Email: Dr. Law


Amanda J. Law, Ph.D.

Professor, Dr. Nancy L. Gary Endowed Chair


Positions and Employment:

University of Oxford, UK - Postdoctoral Fellow, 2000-2003

University of Oxford, UK - Assistant Professor, 2003-2005

University of Oxford, UK - Associate Professor, 2005-2009

NIH, NIMH, Clinical Brain Disorders Branch - Visiting Scientist (adjunct faculty), 2006-2009

NIH, NIMH, Intramural Research Program - Senior Research Scientist, Laboratory Head, 2009-2012

University of Colorado-Anschutz Medical Campus –

Professor of Psychiatry, Dr. Nancy Gary Chair in Children’s Mental Disorders Research, 2012-

Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology, 2012-

Director, Neurodevelopmental and Neuropsychiatric Genetics Lab.

I am Graduate Training faculty on the following programs: 


Honors and Awards:                                                                

Young Scientist Award, presented at the 10th Biennial Schizophrenia Meeting, 2000

Young Scientist Award, presented at the 11th Biennial Schizophrenia Meeting, 2002

New York Academy of Sciences Travel Award, 2003

Young Scientist Award (presented by International Congress on Schizophrenia Research), 2003

Eli Lilly Fellowship (presented by Society of Biological Psychiatry), 2004

Astor Travel Fund Award, 2005

NARSAD, Brain Behavior Research Foundation, Young Investigator Award, 2006-2008

American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) Travel Award, 2008

Georgetown University School of Medicine, MSc Program. Mentor Recognition Award, 2009

NIH, NIMH Outstanding Achievement, Employee Performance Award, 2010 & 2011

NIMH, NIH Scientific Directors Special Achievement Award 2011

Sidney R. Baer, Jr. Award. Outstanding Research Achievement Prize for Schizophrenia Research, Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, 2012

NIH, NIMH, Conte Centre Grant. 5P50MH086383-04 Basic to Clinical Molecular Neurobiology of Nicotinic Receptors in Schizophrenia 2012-2014



Key administrative positions:

Course Director. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Course (CSHL): Schizophrenia and related disorders (June 9 - 15, 2010)

Course Director. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Course (CSHL): Schizophrenia and related disorders  (June 6 - 12 2012)

Cell Biology, Stem Cell and Development Program. Graduate Program, Curriculum Committee. (2013-current).


University Courses:

Essentials Core Curriculum, Nervous System Block. MD Program, University of Colorado, School of Medicine. (2013-current) 

Lecturer, Neuroanatomy (Schizophrenia series). St Georges Medical School, University of London, UK (2003-2006)

Senior Instructor (Human Anatomy RSM BIOL20912; Anatomical Sciences and Life Sciences and SOM), University of Manchester, UK (1997-2000)

Course instructor (Cell Biology RSM BIOL20322; Biomedical Sciences and Life Sciences), University of Manchester, UK (1997-2000)


NIH, Teaching and Training:

NIMH, NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, Research Fellow and Postbac IRTA training programs: Research Preceptor and supervisor (2009-current)

MSc in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Program; Georgetown University School of Medicine. Research Preceptor and supervisor; (2009-current)

Howard Hughes Medical Institute/NIH Fellow Program. Research Preceptor and supervisor (2008-current)

NIH summer internship program. Research Preceptor and supervisor (2006-current)

PhD Thesis Director and Co-Supervisor, University of Oxford. (2006-2009)



Selected Peer-Reviewed Publications:

*corresponding author

1.        Law AJ* and Deakin JFW. Asymmetrical reductions of hippocampal NMDAR1 glutamate receptor mRNA in the psychoses. Neuroreport, 2001; 12 (13): 2971-2974

2.        Eastwood SL, Law AJ, Everall IP, Harrison PJ. The axonal chemorepellant semaphorin 3A is increased in the cerebellum in schizophrenia and may contribute to its synaptic pathology. Mol Psychiatry. 2003; 8: 148-155.

3.        Law AJ* and Harrison PJ. The distribution and morphology of prefrontal cortex pyramidal neurons identified using anti-neurofilament antibodies SMI32, N200 and FNP7. Normative data and a comparison in subjects with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or major depression. J Psychiat Res. 2003; 37 (6): 487-499

4.        Law AJ*, Shannon Weickert C, Webster MJ. Herman  MM, Kleinman JE, Harrison PJ. Expression of NMDA receptor NR1, NR2A and NR2B subunit mRNAs during development of the human hippocampal formation. Eur J Neuroscience. 2003. 18 (5): 1197-1206

5.        Law AJ*. Schizophrenia, IV: Neuregulin-1 in the human brain. Am J Psychiatry. 2003; 160 (8):1392-1394

6.        Harrison PJ, Law AJ, Eastwood SL. Glutamate receptors and transporters in the hippocampus in schizophrenia. Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 2003; 1003: 94-101

7.        Law AJ*, Shannon Weickert C, Webster MJ,. Herman  MM, Kleinman JE, Harrison PJ.. Changes in NMDA receptor subunit mRNAs, and cyclophilin mRNA, during development of the human hippocampus. Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 2003; 1003: 426-430

8.        Law AJ, Hutchinson LJ, Burnet PWJ and Harrison PJ. Antipsychotics Increase Microtubule-Associated Protein 2 (MAP2) mRNA but not Spinophilin mRNA in the Rat Hippocampus and Cortex. J Neurosci. 2004 76(3):376-82

9.        Law AJ*, Shannon Weickert C, Hyde TM, Kleinman JE, Harrison PJ.. Neuregulin 1(NRG-1) messenger RNA and protein in the human brain. Neuroscience. 2004, 127(1) 125-136

10.        Law AJ*, Shannon Weickert C, Hyde TM, Kleinman JE, Harrison PJ.. Reduced spinophilin but not MAP2 expression in the hippocampal formation in schizophrenia and mood disorder: Molecular evidence for the involvement of dendritic spines Am J Psychiatry. 2004, 161(10):1848-55

11.        Law AJ*; Barbara K. Lipska; Cynthia Shannon Weickert; Thomas M. Hyde; Richard E. Straub; Ryota Hashimoto; Paul J. Harrison; Joel E. Kleinman; Daniel R. Weinberger: Neuregulin 1 (NRG1) Transcripts are differentially expressed in schizophrenia and regulated by 5’ snps associated with the disease . Proc Nat Acad Sci. 2006; 103(17):6747-52

12.        Harrison PJ and Law AJ: Neuregulin 1 (NRG1) and schizophrenia: genetics, gene expression, and neurobiology. Biol Psychiatry. 2006 Jul 15;60(2):132-40

13.        Law AJ*; Joel E. Kleinman; Daniel R. Weinberger; Cynthia Shannon Weickert: Disease associated intronic variants in the ErbB4 gene are related to altered ErbB4 splice variant expression in the brain in schizophrenia Hum Mol Genet. 2007 Jan 15;16(2):129-41

14.        Mathew SV, Law AJ, Lipska BK, Davila-Garcia MI, Zamora ED, Mitkus SN, Vakkalanka R, Straub RE, Weinberger DR, Kleinman JE, Hyde TM. {alpha}7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor mRNA expression and binding in postmortem human brain are associated with genetic variation in Neuregulin 1. Hum Mol Genet. 2007; 16(23):2921-32

15.        Tan W, Wang Y, Gold B; Chen, J ; Dean M; Harrison PJ; Weinberger DRW and Law AJ*. Molecular cloning of a brain-specific, developmentally regulated Neuregulin 1 isoform and identification of a functional promoter variant associated with schizophrenia.  J Biol Chem. 2007; 282(33):24343-51; also Paper of the week (selected within top 1% of papers reviewed in a year in terms of significance and overall scientific importance)

16.        Chong VZ, Thompson M, Beltaifa S, Webster MJ, Law AJ, Weickert CS. Elevated neuregulin-1 and ErbB4 protein in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenic patients. Schizophr Res. 2008; 100 (1-3):270-80

17.        AJ Law, Pei Q, Feldon J, Pryce CR, Harrison PJ. Gene expression in the anterior cingulate cortex and amygdala of adolescent marmoset monkeys following parental separations in infancy. Int J Neuropsychopharmacology. 2009 Jul;12(6):761-72.

18.        AJ Law*, Q Pei, M Walker, H Gordon-Andrews, C Shannon Weickert, J Feldon, CR Pryce, PJ Harrison; Early Parental Deprivation in the Marmoset Monkey Produces Long-Term Changes in Hippocampal Expression of Genes Involved in Synaptic Plasticity and Implicated in Mood Disorder. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2009 May; 34(6):1381-94.

19.        Nicodemus KK, Law AJ, Luna A, Vakkalanka R, Straub RE, Kleinman JE, Weinberger DR. A 5’ promoter region SNP in NRG1 is associated with schizophrenia risk and type III isoform expression. Mol Psychiatry 2009; 14, 741–743

20.        Deakin IH, Law AJ, Oliver PL, Schwab MH, Nave KA, Harrison PJ et al. Behavioural characterization of neuregulin 1 type I overexpressing transgenic mice. Neuroreport 2009; 20:1523–1528

21.        D Arabadzisz, R, Diaz-Heitjz, I Knuesel, E Weber, S Pilloud, A, Dettling-Artho, J Feldon, AJ Law, PJ Harrison, and C R. Pryce. Primate Early Life Stress Leads to Long-Term Mild Hippocampal Decreases in Corticosteroid Receptor Expression. Biol Psychiatry. 2010; Jun 1;67(11):1106-9

22.        W Tan, M Dean and AJ Law*. Molecular cloning and characterization of the human ErbB4 gene: Identification of novel splice isoforms in the developing and adult brain. PLoS One. 2010; 5 (9) e12924

23.        Nicodemus, K.K., Law, A.J., Radulescu,E, Luna, A, Kolachana, B, Vakkalanka R, Rujescu, D, Giegling, R, Straub, R.E., McGee, K, Gold, B, Dean, M, Muglia, P, Callicott, J.H, Tan, H-Y, Weinberger D.R. (2010).  NRG1, ERBB4 and AKT1 Epistasis Increases Schizophrenia Risk and is Biologically Validated via Functional Neuroimaging in Healthy Controls.  Arch Gen Psychiatry.  2010; 67(10):991-1001

24.        JE Kleinman, AJ. Law, BK. Lipska, TM. Hyde, JK. Ellis, PJ. Harrison and DR. Weinberger. Genetic Neuropathology of Schizophrenia: New Approaches to an Old Question, and New Uses for Post Mortem Human Brains. Biol Psychiatry. 2010; 69(2):140-5

25.        WT Kao; Y Wang; JE. Kleinman; BK. Lipska; TM. Hyde; DR. Weinberger and AJ Law*. Common genetic variation in Neuregulin 3 (NRG3) influences risk for schizophrenia and impacts NRG3 expression in human brain. Proc Nat Acad Sci. 2010; Aug 31;107(35):15619-24

26.        T Hyde, B Lipska, T Ali, S Mathew, AJ Law, O Metitiri, R Straub, T Ye, C Colantuoni, M Herman, L Bigelow, D Weinberger, and J Kleinman. Expression of GABA signaling molecules KCC2, NKCC1, and GAD1 in cortical development and schizophrenia. J Neurosci. 2011; Jul 27;31(30):11088-95

27.        Marenco S; Geramita M; Willem van der Veen J; Barnett  AS; Kolachana B; Shen J; Weinberger DR and AJ Law.* Genetic association of ErbB4 and Human Cortical GABA levels in-vivo.  J Neurosci. 2011; Aug 10;31(32):11628-32

28.        Deakin IH, Law AJ, Nissen W, Schwab M, Nave K-A, Lamsa K, Paulsen O, Bannerman DM, Harrison PJ.  Transgenic over-expression of the type I isoform of neuregulin 1 (NRG1) affects working memory and hippocampal oscillations but not long term potentiation. Cereb Cortex. 2011 Aug 30. [Epub ahead of print]

29.        Marder SR, Roth B, Sullivan PF, Scolnick EM, Nestler EJ, Geyer MA, Welnberger DR, Karayiorgou M, Guidotti A, Gingrich J, Akbarian S, Buchanan RW, Lieberman JA, Conn PJ, Haggarty SJ, Law AJ, Campbell B, Krystal JH, Moghaddam B, Sawa A, Caron MG, George SR, Allen JA, Solis M. Advancing drug discovery for schizophrenia. 2011. Ann N Y Acad Sci. Oct;1236:30-43.

30.        AJ Law*; Y Wang Y; Y Sei; KK Nicodemus; RE Straub; PJ Harrison; F Sambataro R Vakkalanka; BK Lipska; TM Hyde; JE Kleinman; and DR Weinberger. NRG1-ErbB4-p110δ signaling in schizophrenia and evidence of p110δ inhibition as a potential therapeutic strategy. 2012 Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Jul 24;109(30):12165-70. Epub 2012 Jun 11.

31.       Biological Effects of COMT Haplotypes and Psychosis Risk in 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome. Law AJ*, Gothelf D*, Frisch A, Chen J, Zarchi O, Michaelovsky E, Ren-Patterson R, Lipska BK, Carmel M, Kolachana B, Weizman A, Weinberger DR. Biol Psychiatry. 2013 Aug 27. [Epub ahead of print]

32.        Effects of Neuregulin 3 (NRG3) genotype on prefrontal cortex physiology. Tost, H, Callicott, JH, Rasetti, R, Vakkalanka, R , Mattay, VS, Weinberger, DR, Law AJ*.  J Neurosci. 2014 Jan 15;34(3). 

Grants and Scholarships:
(1997-2000) Medical Research Council PhD Scholarship.
(2003-2005) Wellcome Trust Project Grant (Leading Research Scientist): Investigating the Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology of a Non-Human Primate Model of Early Life Stress (University of Oxford, Prof. Paul Harrison (PI)).
(2005-2009) Medical Research Council Career Development Award (PI): Neuregulin-1: Dissecting the Molecular Mechanisms of Genetic Susceptibility for Schizophrenia.
NARSAD Young Investigator Grant. Foundation, 2006-2008. (PI)
(2006-2008) NARSAD Young Investigator Award (PI): Molecular and Functional Characterization of Type IV Neuregulin 1, a novel isoform associated with genetic risk for schizophrenia
(2012) Sidney R. Baer, Jr. Research Award, Brain and Behavior Research Foundation
U.S Provisional Patent (USA No.61/119,978): Inventor. 2008
PIK3CD Drugs for the Treatment of Psychosis and Cognitive Deficiency
NIH, NIMH, Conte Centre Grant. 5P50MH086383-04 Basic to Clinical Molecular Neurobiology of Nicotinic Receptors in Schizophrenia 2012-2014