Matthew Kearney

I am a PGY1 psychiatry resident excited to start a new journey in the PSTP at MGH/McLean! I was born and grew up in Des Moines, Iowa and attended college at the University of Chicago. I then joined the MSTP at Duke University School of Medicine where I completed my MD and PhD in neurobiology studying vocal learning circuits in songbirds. My thesis employed in vivo calcium imaging, optogenetics, electrophysiology, digital signal processing, and behavioral analysis to uncover the neural circuit mechanisms by which songbirds evaluate vocal performance quality via modulation of midbrain dopaminergic neurons to support vocal learning.

As a PSTP resident, I plan to continue and extend my training in elucidating neural circuit mechanisms underlying learning, memory, and cognition in animal models to investigate how these mechanisms are disrupted in psychiatric disease. Specifically, I plan to develop a research program grounded in systems neuroscience that integrates insights from computational psychiatry and genetics to translate circuit discoveries in animal models into meaningful insights for psychiatric patients.

Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my wife and son, hiking and being outdoors, running, and basketball.


Department of Neurobiology, Duke University School of Medicine, PhD, 2020

Duke University School of Medicine, MD, 2020


2017 Best Graduate Student Poster, Duke Neurobiology Annual Retreat
2014 Feagin Scholar, Feagin Leadership Program
2014 Chancellor’s Service Fellowship
2014 Alpha Omega Alpha
2010 Phi Beta Kappa
2010 Sheila Putzel Prize