The 2016 Heinz Lehmann Award will be presented to Dr. Lakshmi Yatham at the 39th Annual Meeting of the Canadian College of Neuropsychopharmacology in Halifax, Nova Scotia. This award, sponsored by Pfizer Canada Inc., is designed to recognize outstanding research achievements by Canadian scientists in the field of Neuropsychopharmacology.
Dr. Lakshmi N. Yatham is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He is also the Regional Head of Psychiatry and Regional Program Medical Director for Mental Health and Addictions at Vancouver Coastal Health and Providence Healthcare. He has an executive MBA in health care from the Sauder School of Business. Dr. Yatham has held leadership positions for national and international professional organizations including being the President of the International Society for Bipolar Disorders, and he is currently the Secretary for the World Federation of Societies for Biological Psychiatry. Dr. Yatham was featured in the recently published Thomson Reuter’s report on “Most Influential Scientific Minds of our Time” as one of the top 100 most highly cited researchers in psychiatry/psychology in the world.
Dr. Yatham’s major areas of research interest include neurobiology and treatment of bipolar disorder and major depression. Dr. Yatham has received a number of awards during his career including the Michael Smith Foundation Senior Scholar Award and NARSAD Young and Independent Investigator Awards for his research, Distinguished Medical Research Lecturer Award from the Faculty of Medicine at UBC, the prestigious Mogen Schou Award for international education and advocacy on bipolar disorder from the International Society for Bipolar Disorders, South Asian Forum International Award for his contributions to psychiatric research in the developing world, the Canadian College of Neuropsychopharmacology Medal for his contributions to psychopharmacology and John M Cleghorn Award for excellence in research and leadership from the Canadian Psychiatric Association. Dr. Yatham’s work has been funded by a number of peer-reviewed funding agencies such as the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Canadian Psychiatric Research Foundation, Stanley Foundation, and National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression, USA. Dr. Yatham leads a Canadian consortium on bipolar disorder, which is pursuing testing of treatments for bipolar disorder using pragmatic and controlled trials with funding from CIHR. He was a chair of the Michael Smith Foundation Clinical Scholars Committee and has been a reviewer and a committee
Dr. Yatham has a google scholar h-index of 60, and he has published over 250 papers in peer-reviewed international journals including in high impact journals such as Molecular Psychiatry, Archives of General Psychiatry, American Journal of Psychiatry, World Psychiatry, Biological Psychiatry and British Journal of Psychiatry. He has edited books and written a number of book chapters including a chapter on Treatment of Mood Disorders for the upcoming version of the Kaplan and Sadock’s Comprehensive Textbook of Psychiatry. Dr. Yatham is a sought out speaker and has presented his research work at numerous international conferences. He has edited journal supplements and top selling books on bipolar disorder. He is the Chair of the bipolar group of the Canadian Network for Mood and Anxiety Treatments (CANMAT), and is actively involved at a national and international level in continuing medical education and public education on diagnosis and treatment of bipolar disorder for psychiatrists, family physicians, and the general public. He co-led the development of Canadian guidelines for treatment of bipolar disorder in 1997 and his CANMAT group revised the guidelines for 2005 with International Commentaries. The CANMAT guidelines are widely used for treatment of bipolar disorder around the world as these are updated and published every 2 years in the Bipolar Disorders journal with the most recent update published in February 2013. These guidelines are highly cited with the 2009 version receiving close to 550 citations. He sits on the editorial boards of a number of journals including Bipolar Disorders, World Journal of Biological Psychiatry, Acta Neuropsychiatrica, Australia and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, Human Psychopharmacology, etc.
In summary, Dr. Lakshmi Yatham has made significant contributions to the field of neuropsychopharmacology and is a very worthy co-recipient of the 2016 Heinz Lehmann Award. Congratulations to Dr. Yatham!