Skip Navigation

Bremner Scientific Biography

J. Douglas Bremner, M.D.

is Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Radiology and Director of the Emory Center for Positron Emission Tomography (PET) at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia, and Director of Mental Health Research at the Atlanta VAMC in Decatur, Georgia. Dr. Bremner moved to Emory from Yale in November of 2000 where he spent the first 12 years of his career.

Dr. Bremner’s research has used neuroimaging and neurobiology measures to study the neural correlates and neurobiology of posttraumatic stress
disorder (PTSD) related to combat and childhood abuse, as well as the related area of depression. His more recent work is expanding to look at the relationship between brain, behavior, and physical health including studies of heart disease and the brain, and acne and the brain. Dr. Bremner has worked continuously throughout his career as a physician scientist, with the support of funding from two successive VA Career Development Awards, VA Merit Review, NIMH, DOD, and various private sources. His research included studies of the neurobiology and assessment of PTSD, hippocampus and memory in PTSD and depression, neural correlates of declarative memory and traumatic remembrance in PTSD, PET measurement of neuroreceptor binding in mood and anxiety disorders, neural correlates of myocardial ischemia, and the effects of psychotropic and acne medication on brain function and structure.

Following obtaining a bachelors degree in literature, Dr. Bremner attended medical school at Duke University where he graduated in 1987, followed by residency in Psychiatry (1991) and Nuclear Medicine (1997) at Yale School of Medicine, leading to a double board certification. Dr Bremner was a VA Biological Psychiatry Fellow at the West Haven VA and Yale from 1990-1993, Assistant and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Radiology from 1993 to 2000, Director of the Yale Trauma Research Program and Associate Director of the Yale PET Center, before moving to Emory in 2000 to take his current position.

Dr. Bremner has authored or co-authored over 100 peer reviewed articles and book chapters, and written or edited three books, most recently Does Stress Damage the Brain? Understanding Trauma-Related Disorders from a Mind-Body Perspective published by W.W. Norton & Co. (2002). He is on the editorial boards of several journals and the Scientific Advisory Board of the Anxiety Disorders Association of America. He has received several awards for his work, including the Chaim Danieli Award for Research and Service in Traumatic Stress from the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies.