Francis S. Y. Lee, M.D., Ph.D.

Francis Lee

Francis Lee, MD, PhD is a Professor and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Psychiatry and a Professor in the Department of Pharmacology and an Attending Psychiatrist at New York Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical College.

Dr. Lee obtained an MD and PhD from the University of Michigan, followed by Psychiatry residency training at Payne Whitney Clinic, Weill Cornell Medical College. He completed further postdoctoral training in molecular neuroscience at the Skirball Institute, New York University and the University of California, San Francisco.

Currently, as the director of a laboratory whose main area of research is in basic molecular and neural mechanisms that are relevant to neuropsychiatric disorders. In particular, his research is focused on using genetic models to delineate the role of growth factors, such as BDNF, in complex behaviors related to the pathophysiology and treatment of affective disorders.


Insurance Plans Accepted

The following represents most of the managed care plans accepted by this physician. If your insurance carrier does not appear here please contact the physician’s office as they may have individual contracts not included on this site.

* indicates this physician is no longer accepting new patients with this insurance plan.

  • Aetna - Weill Cornell [POS]
  • Rockefeller University - CoreSource


Pattwell SS, Bath KG, Casey BJ, Ninan I*, Lee FS*. Selective early-acquired fear memories undergo temporary suppression during adolescence. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 108:1182-1187, 2011.

Soliman F, Glatt CE, Bath KG, Levita L, Jones RM, Pattwell SS, Jing DQ, Tottenham N, Amso D, Somerville L, Voss HU, Glover G, Ballon DJ, Liston C, Teslovich T, Van Kempen T, Lee FS*, Casey BJ*. A genetic variant BDNF polymorphism alters extinction learning in both mouse and human. Science 327:863-866, 2010.

Shmelkov SV, Hormigo A, Jing DQ, Proenca CC, Bath KG, Tilde M, Shmelkov EV, Kushner J, Baljevic M, Murphy AJ, Valenzuela DM, Gale NW, Yancopoulos GD, Ninan I, Lee FS*, Rafii S*. Slitrk5 deficiency impairs corticostriatal circuitry and leads to obsessive-compulsive-like behaviors in mice. Nature Medicine 16:598-602, 2010.

Sharma N, Deppmann CD, Harrington AW, Hillaire CS, Chen ZY, Lee FS, Ginty DD. Long distance control of synapse assembly by target-derived NGF. Neuron 67:422-434, 2010.

Ninan I, Bath KG, Dagar K, Perez-castro R, Plummer MR, Lee FS, Chao MV. The BDNF Val66Met polymorphism impairs NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. J. Neurosci. 30:8866-8870, 2010.

Spencer JL, Waters EM, Milner TA, Lee FS, McEwen BS. Variant BDNF Val66Met interacts with estrous cycle in the control of hippocampal function. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 107:4395-4400, 2010.

Gleason G, Liu B, Bruening S, Velzen, A, Auerbach, A, Mark, W, Oh, J, Gal, J, Lee FS, Toth M. Dual risk for anxiety: maternal and offspring 5-HT1A receptor deficiency and their converging pathways. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 107:7592-7597, 2010.

Yu H, Wang Y, Pattwell SS, Jing DQ, Liu T, Zhang Y, Bath KG, Lee FS*, Chen ZY*. Variant BDNF Val66Met polymorphism affects extinction of conditioned aversive memory. J. Neurosci. 29:4056-4064, 2009.

Bath KG, Voss HU, Jing DQ, Anderson SA, Hempstead BL, Lee FS, Dyke JP, Ballon DJ. Quantitative intact specimen magnetic resonance microscopy at 3.0 Tesla. Magnetic Resonance Imaging 27:672-680, 2009.

Yang J, Siao CJ, Nagappan G, Marinic T, Jing DQ, McGrath K, Chen ZY, Mark W, Tessarollo L, Lee FS, Lu B, Hempstead BL. Neuronal release of proBDNF. Nature Neurosci. 12: 113-115, 2009.

Carim-Todd L, Bath KG, Fulgenzi G, Yanpallewar S, Jing DQ, Barrick CA, Becker J, Buckley H, Dorsey SG, Lee FS, Tessarollo L. Endogenous truncated TrkB.T1 receptor regulates neuronal complexity and TrkB kinase receptor function in vivo. J. Neurosci. 29:678-685, 2009.

Bath KG, Mandairon N, Jing DQ, Rajagopal R, Kapoor R, Chen ZY, Khan T, Proenca CC, Kraemer R, Cleland T, Hempstead BL, Chao MV, Lee FS. Variant brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Val66Met) alters adult olfactory bulb neurogenesis and spontaneous olfactory discrimination. J. Neurosci. 28:2383-2393, 2008.

Krishnan V, Han MH, Graham DL, Berton O, Renthal W, Russo SJ, Laplant Q, Graham A, Lutter M, Lagace DC, Ghose S, Reister R, Tannous P, Green TA, Neve R, Chakravarty S, Kumar A, Eisch A, Self DW, Lee FS, Tamminga CA, Cooper DC, Gershenfeld HK, Nestler E. Molecular mechanisms of resilience in brain reward regions. Cell. 131:391-404, 2007.

Magby JP, Bi C, Chen ZY, Lee FS, Plummer MR. Single-cell characterization of retrograde signaling by brain-derived neurotrophic factor. J. Neurosci. 26:13531-36, 2006

Chen ZY, Jing DQ, Ieraci A, Bath KG, Khan T, Siao CJ, Herrera DG, Toth M, Yang C, McEwen BS, Hempstead BL, Lee FS. Variant BDNF (Val66Met) polymorphism alters anxiety-related behavior. Science. 314:140-143, 2006

Arevalo JC, Waite J, Rajagopal R, Beyna M, Chen ZY, Lee FS, Chao MV. Cell survival through Trk neurotrophin receptors is differentially regulated by ubiquitination. Neuron 50:549-59, 2006.

Chen ZY, Ieraci A, Tanowitz M, Lee FS. A novel endocytic recycling signal distinguishes biological responses of trk neurotrophin receptors. Mol Biol Cell. 16:5761-772, 2005.

Chen ZY, Ieraci A, Teng H, Dall H, Meng CX, Herrera DG, Nykjaer A, Hempstead BL,Lee FS. Sortilin controls intracellular sorting of brain-derived neurotrophic factor to the regulated secretory pathway. J Neurosci. 25:6156-66, 2005.

Teng HK, Teng KK, Lee R, Wright S, Tevar S, Almeida RD, Kermani P, Torkin R, Chen ZY, Lee FS, Kraemer RT, Nykjaer A, Hempstead BL. ProBDNF induces neuronal apoptosis via activation of a receptor complex of p75NTR and sortilin. J Neurosci. 2004 25:5455-5463, 2005.

Chen ZY, Patel PD, Sant G, Meng CX, Teng KK, Hempstead BL, Lee FS. Variant brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) (Met66) alters the intracellular trafficking and activity-dependent secretion of wild-type BDNF in neurosecretory cells and cortical neurons. J Neurosci. 24(18):4401-4411, 2004.

Lee FS, Chao MV. Activation of Trk neurotrophin receptors in the absence of neurotrophins. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 13;98(6):3555-3560, 2001.