© 2021 WKSU
Public Radio News for Northeast Ohio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Health & Science

Inaugural Director Aims to Help Kent State Lead the Way in Brain Health Research

A photo of Kent State president Beverly Warren with Michael Lehman, the new director of the Brain Health Research Institute
Kent State University President Beverly Warren introduces Michael Lehman, the inaugural director of the Brain Health Institute.

A new undertaking at Kent State aims to advance discoveries about the human brain. The University on Monday introduced the first director of its new Brain Health Research Institute.

"At Kent State we have a remarkably diverse community of neuroscientists," said Dr. Michael Lehman, who will lead that group. He comes to Kent from the University of Mississippi where he created the Neuro Institute. His research has focused on neuro-endocrinology and circadian rhythms. At Kent he’ll lead an Institute that has been years in the making. President Beverly Warren said the vision began with faculty.   

Dr. Michael Lehman has put together a Scientific Advisory Committee with representatives from healthcare providers and the medical college in Rootstown.

"The scientists that really are hungry to work together in this amazing field of brain health. When you think about it it’s mind boggling," Warren said, enjoying the play on words. Warren thinks Kent, because it does not have a medical school, can come at brain research from a unique perspective. 

"It’s not based in disease or cures for disease. It’s based in brain health, and I think that is going to serve to make us very, very unique across the country in our approach." 

Lehman said the tools are there.

Lehman plans to create what he calls a collaboratory, working with ten or more disciplines.

His job will be to create the structure and pursue the financial support. He has a good track record. His research has been funded by federal agencies like the National Science Foundation for more than 30 years.