Columbia University Medical Center
Top Ranked in the Nation in Research Funding
and Patient Care
U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals
National Institutes of Health
NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital The University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell

The Reiner Center for Behavior and Psychosomatic Medicine

Ralph Wharton, MD and Richard Sloan, PhD


The Reiner Center for Behavioral and Psychosomatic Medicine seeks to:

  • understand the interaction of psychological, psychosocial, and behavioral risks in determining the onset, progression, and management of physical and mental disease;
  • identify the mechanisms linking psychological states to disease; and
  • create treatments that target these mechanisms.

Projects range from the molecular to the cellular to the behavioral to the cellular. Specific studies look at how:

  • psychological risk factors, such as hostility, depression, and anxiety, contribute to the risk of heart disease;
  • gender affects the ability of exercise to prevent heart disease;
  • expectant mothers’ stress and mood affects fetal and infant development, especially the future child's biobehavioral reactivity, affect regulation, and risk for psychopathology ;
  • new approaches to treating anxiety disorders in older adults; and
  • how treatment for cancer may increase risk for cognitive dysfunction.


The Center receives support from the National Institutes of Health, the American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society, NARSAD, the March of Dimes, the MacArthur Foundation, and the Nathaniel Wharton Fund.


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