Sarah Sperry, Ph.D. recently joined the Prechter Program as an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry. Her passion for bipolar disorder research developed during her BS at Tufts University and postbaccalaureate research at McLean Hospital. She went on to receive her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
As part of her doctorate, Dr. Sperry completed a clinical internship at the Medical University of South Carolina where she focused on co-occurring bipolar disorder, substance use, and sleep disorders. She completed her postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Vanderbilt University Medical Center where she helped lead a large clinical study to better understand severe mental illness.
Dr. Sperry’s work has significantly contributed to the understanding and measurement of emotion in bipolar disorder. She is recognized as an expert in the use of smartphone and wearable devices to study changes in emotions in daily life.
At U-M, she will start the Emotion and Temporal Dynamics (EmoTe) Lab. The mission of her research is to improve early detection and predict the course of illness in bipolar disorder. The goal of her work is to improve treatments for individuals living with bipolar disorder using a person-centered, measurement approach. Projects in the EmoTe lab will seamlessly integrate with the Prechter Program and the hallmark Longitudinal Study of Bipolar Disorder. Dr. Sperry has already begun working with key members of the Prechter team including Emily Mower Provost, Ph.D., and Ivy Tso, Ph.D., to submit grants that aim to identify key mechanisms underlying emotion instability in bipolar disorder using innovative technology and computational approaches.
Dr. Sperry is thrilled to be moving to Ann Arbor and looking forward to playing an integral role with the Prechter Program.