Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineInstitute of Clinical Sciences

Visiting Professor



+44 (0)20 3313 4318oliver.howes Website




Steiner MRI UnitHammersmith HospitalHammersmith Campus





Oliver Howes is Group Head and Professor of Molecular Psychiatry. His clinical work is as Consultant Psychiatrist at The Institute of Psychiatry/ Maudsley Hospital.

Contact: tel: +44 (0)20 8383 3298

Mental illnesses are a major cause of ill health and premature death. They account for four of the six leading causes of adult disability in the world and one in every ten hospital beds in the UK is allocated for the treatment of psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia.

“Our research focuses on understanding the causes of mental illnesses and improving their treatment using PET and other functional imaging techniques" 

Current work in the group focuses on:

  • Understanding the brain changes that lead to the development of psychotic disorders, using multi-modal imaging with PET and MRI
  • Examining the effects of cannabis and other drugs on the brain, and the influence of common genetic polymorphisms on brain function
  • Determining why some patients respond to treatments and others don’t
  • Using novel approaches to diagnosing mental illnesses
  • Developing models for future drug development



Manchia M, Gathier AW, Yapici-Eser H, et al., 2022, The impact of the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic on stress resilience and mental health: A critical review across waves, European Neuropsychopharmacology, Vol:55, ISSN:0924-977X, Pages:22-83

Whitehurst T, Howes O, 2022, The role of mitochondria in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia: A critical review of the evidence focusing on mitochondrial complex one, Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, Vol:132, ISSN:0149-7634, Pages:449-464

Dedic N, Dworak H, Zeni C, et al., 2021, Therapeutic Potential of TAAR1 Agonists in Schizophrenia: Evidence from Preclinical Models and Clinical Studies., Int J Mol Sci, Vol:22

Osimo E, Sweeney M, De Marvao A, et al., 2021, Adipose tissue dysfunction, inflammation, and insulin resistance: alternative pathways to cardiac remodelling in schizophrenia. A multimodal, case-control study, Translational Psychiatry, Vol:11, ISSN:2158-3188, Pages:1-9

Allen P, Hird EJ, Orlov N, et al., 2021, Correction: Adverse clinical outcomes in people at clinical high-risk for psychosis related to altered interactions between hippocampal activity and glutamatergic function (Translational Psychiatry, (2021), 11, 1, (579), 10.1038/s41398-021-01705-z), Translational Psychiatry, Vol:11

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