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Professor Judith Pratt

Research Professor

Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences

Personal statement

Research Professor (2013-), Professor of Systems Neuroscience (2003), PhD (Institute of Psychiatry 1982).  Co-Director of Psychiatric Research Institute of Neuroscience in Glasgow (PsyRING; a collaboration between the Universities of Strathclyde and Glasgow and NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde.  Since 1997, PsyRING has engaged in major collaborations with Pharmaceutical companies to provide translational solutions for drug discovery and development in Psychiatric disease. 

Research Interests are focussed on understanding the molecular and neural systems that underpin behaviour in mental health and disease. We are a multidisciplinary, friendly team with expertise spanning genetics, molecular biology, brain imaging and behaviour.

Schizophrenia: PsyRING has provided new insight into the glutamate hypothesis of schizophrenia.  We have demonstrated that PCP produces schizophrenia-like changes in brain imaging, GABAergic interneurone markers and cognition. Novel therapeutic targets have been identified (e.g. serominic) and validated.   We have determined the functional brain networks subserving PCP-induced disruption of cognition and their restoration by the pro-cognitive drug modafinil.  Current work is focussed on understanding the neurobiological mechanisms of genetic risk factors for schizophrenia. We have identified a novel risk gene for schizophrenia MAP2K7 and shown that it produces schizophrenia-like working memory deficits. In a recent multicentre translational medicine grant with Pfizer we have identified key neural substrates underpinning behavioural deficits in DISC1 mouse models and demonstrated that the thalamic reticular nucleus is a key region affected in the models.

Cannabinoids: We are investigating the mechanisms of interaction between the constituents of cannabis (e.g. THC and cannabidiol) and with THC and other psychoactive drugs.  Recent work is focussed on environment-environment interactions determining the impact of prenatal infection and adolescence THC exposure on brain systems and behaviour in adulthood.

CeNsUS (Centre for Neuroscience at the University of Strathclyde): Through multidisciplinary collaborations within CeNsUS we are 1) applying novel algorithms from network science to understanding brain systems underpinning drug actions in disease and  2) developing medical devices for deep brain stimulation 3) Investigating the role of the reticular thalamic nucleus in the corticothalamic system using optogenetics

Public engagement.  Engaged in activities at the Glasgow Science Festival, Glasgow Science Centre, Schools, Restaurants, British Association for the Advancement of Science 


Disruption of the Zdhhc9 intellectual disability gene leads to behavioural abnormalities in a mouse
Kouskou Marianna, Thomson David M., Brett Ros R., Wheeler Lee, Tate Rothwelle J., Pratt Judith A., Chamberlain Luke H.
Experimental Neurology Vol 308, pp. 35-46, (2018)
Distortion of protein analysis in primary neuronal cultures by serum albumin from culture medium : a methodological approach to improve target protein quantification
Willis Ashleigh, Pratt Judith A., Morris Brian J.
Journal of Neuroscience Methods Vol 308, pp. 1-5, (2018)
Biomarkers in neuropsychiatry : a prospect for the twenty-first century?
Pratt Judith, Hall Jeremy
Current Topics in Behavioral NeurosciencesCurrent Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences, (2018)
Deconstructing schizophrenia : advances in preclinical models for biomarker identification
Pratt Judith A, Morris Brian, Dawson Neil
Current Topics in Behavioral NeurosciencesCurrent Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences, (2018)
Mice haploinsufficient for Map2k7, a gene involved in neurodevelopment and risk for schizophrenia, show impaired attention, a vigilance decrement deficit and unstable cognitive processing in an attentional task : impact of minocycline
Openshaw R.L., Thomson D.M., Penninger J.M., Pratt J.A., Morris B.J.
Psychopharmacology Vol 234, pp. 293-305, (2017)
Thalamo-cortical communication, glutamatergic neurotransmission and neural oscillations : a unique window into the origins of ScZ?
Pratt Judith, Dawson Neil, Morris Brain J., Grent T'Jong Tineke, Roux Frederic, Uhlhaas Peter J.
Schizophrenia Research Vol 180, pp. 4-12, (2017)

more publications

Professional activities

Canadian College of Neuropsychopharmacology, Canada
Keynote/plenary speaker
World Congress on Psychiatric Genetics meeting, Osaka, Japan
Collegium Internationale Neuro-Pschopharmacologicum , Japan
Keynote/plenary speaker
European Behavioural Pharmacology Society Conference
British Association for Psychopharmacology
Life Science , UK
Keynote/plenary speaker

more professional activities


IMPC:Cognitive and ethological characterisation of mice lacking melatonin MT2 receptors
Pratt, Judith (Principal Investigator)
Period 01-Feb-2017 - 31-Jan-2018
Medical Devices Doctoral Training Centre Renewal | O'Reilly, Jamie
Conway, Bernard (Principal Investigator) Pratt, Judith (Co-investigator)
Period 01-Oct-2011 - 27-Jul-2017
Capacity Building Award in Integretive Mammalian Biology: A joint initiative from Glasgow University and Strathclyde University | Stenson, Gillian
Pratt, Judith (Principal Investigator) Bushell, Trevor (Co-investigator)
Period 01-Oct-2008 - 01-Apr-2012
Interrogating the cortico striatal thalamo cortical CSTC circuitry implications for neuropsychiatric drug discovery | Visockis, Vladimir
Pratt, Judith (Principal Investigator) Sakata, Shuzo (Co-investigator) Visockis, Vladimir (Research Co-investigator)
Period 01-Oct-2013 - 01-Oct-2017
Characterising mice syntenic for human 16p11.2 in relation to schizophrenia and autism
Pratt, Judith (Principal Investigator)
Period 01-Nov-2016 - 14-Dec-2018
PsyRING project with Servier Phase 1
Pratt, Judith (Principal Investigator)
Period 01-Oct-2014 - 30-Apr-2019

more projects


Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences

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