Edward Franz Pace-Schott, PhD

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
Dr. Edward F. Pace-Schott, PhD is assistant professor of psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School and director of the Sleep and Anxiety Disorders Laboratory. He received his PhD in behavioral neuroscience from Boston University in 2006. His research focuses on how sleep helps humans regulate their emotions and how this function of sleep is altered in psychopathology. His research uses polysomnography, fMRI, psychophysiology, and self-report data to investigate how sleep interacts with the development of anxiety and traumatic-stress related disorders. His research is particularly focused on sleep's influences on evolutionarily ancient learning and memory processes that contribute to human emotion regulation and are deficient in anxiety disorders and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Such processes include fear extinction—learning that a once feared object or event is no longer dangerous—and habituation, whereby one becomes less reactive to frequently encountered stimuli. Neuroimaging studies in his laboratory examine the structure and function of brain circuits that are active during both the experience of fear and anxiety, and also while learning not to fear. Extinction and habituation are key components of a first-line treatment for anxiety disorders and PTSD, exposure therapy, and his research also examines the use of sleep interventions to assist in treatment of anxiety disorders.


  • PhD Boston University