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Diane Chugani, PhD, Appointed Director, Nemours Neuroscience Research

Primary Interest is Autism Research

Tuesday, Dec 15, 2015

Delaware Valley

Diane C. Chugani, PhD, a neuropharmacologist renowned in the field of autism research, has joined Nemours as Director of Neuroscience Research, based at Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington. The aim of her research has been to discover mechanisms involved in the development of autism and to design and test new treatments based upon the findings. A combination of approaches is employed and includes imaging studies, genetic studies and pharmacologic studies.

Dr. Chugani was formerly professor of pediatrics and chief of the division of clinical pharmacology and toxicology at Wayne State University, and director of the translational imaging laboratory at Children's Hospital of Michigan. Dr. Chugani also founded and directed the University Pediatricians Autism Center.

Dr. Chugani earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology at the University of Maryland and her PhD in pharmacology from UCLA. She is a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Autism Speaks and was a founding board member of the International Society for Autism Research. Dr. Chugani actively publishes and presents and has received more than $13 million in NIH grant support.

Jeffrey Campbell, MD, Director of the Nemours Neuroscience Center said: "Dr. Chugani is a talented scientist with a long history of close collaborations with providers and mentoring young investigators. We look forward to her leadership in developing new clinician researchers within the Neuroscience Center and throughout Nemours."

Vicky Funanage, PhD, Operational Vice President, Nemours Biomedical Research, added: "Dr. Chugani is a transformational faculty hire for the NIH-funded Delaware Clinical and Translational Research ACCEL Program, which includes Nemours, University of Delaware, Christiana Care Health System, and Medical University of South Carolina. Her research will help Nemours Children’s Health System achieve top 10 ranking in NIH funding for free-standing children’s hospitals."

About Nemours

Nemours is an internationally recognized children's health system that owns and operates the two free-standing children’s hospitals: the Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del., and Nemours Children's Hospital in Orlando, Fla., along with outpatient facilities in five states, delivering pediatric primary, specialty and urgent care. Nemours also powers the world’s most-visited website for information on the health of children and teens,, and offers on-demand, online video patient visits through Nemours CareConnect. Nemours is a program dedicated to preventing reading failure in young children, grounded in Nemours’ understanding that child health and learning are inextricably linked, and that reading level is a strong predictor of adult health.

Established as The Nemours Foundation through the legacy and philanthropy of Alfred I. duPont, Nemours provides pediatric clinical care, research, education, advocacy and prevention programs to families in the communities it serves.