Kristen Woodberry, MSW, PhD, is a clinical social worker, licensed clinical psychologist, and early psychosis researcher at the MaineHealth Institute for Research and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. A graduate of Bowdoin College, she obtained her MSW from Simmons College School of Social Work and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Harvard University. She is a Research Assistant Professor in the Psychiatry Department at the Tufts School of Medicine.
With over 25 years of clinical experience with children, adolescents, and families, including pioneering work adapting multifamily psychoeducational group therapies for adolescents and their families, Dr. Woodberry’s research has focused on early intervention in major mental illness. She is particularly interested in 1) understanding and altering vulnerability-stress interactions and trajectories in young people at risk for or in the early stages of illness and 2) improving earlier identification and engagement of adolescents and young adults in primary care settings.
Dr. Woodberry has secured two National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants. The first was a Career Development grant to test the feasibility of using multiuser biofeedback videogames to teach young people and their parents how to alter their stress reactivity within the context of interpersonal interactions. The second, the Daily Life Study, funded by an NIH Exploratory/ Developmental Award, collected dynamic data to better understand the interaction of emerging symptoms and social context over time. Using a smartphone app, Boston and Portland area youth ages 15-25 provided multiple symptom reports a day across three weeks. Given increasing evidence for the benefits of early intervention, identifying predictors and indicators of emerging mental illness is a high public health priority. This line of research will also explore dynamic sequences predictive of critical events and symptom exacerbations. Understanding these dynamics and interactions are expected to inform our understanding of mechanisms of illness progression and novel, including personalized and mobile, interventions to interrupt pathological sequences and improve functional outcomes.
With generous funding from the Sidney R. Baer, Jr. Foundation, Dr. Woodberry is working with key partners in adolescent medicine and psychiatry to improve early detection and intervention in emerging psychosis within primary care settings serving adolescents and young adults. With funding from the Sydney R. Baer, Jr., Foundation and the Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Program (MCPAP) and the thoughtful contributions of the Prevention Collaborative and the CEDAR program, online (psychosisscreening.org) and hard copy resources (Booklet and Card) were developed to support this effort. The feasibility of this work, “Screening for Early and Emerging Mental Experiences” (SEE ME), is being tested through projects at Boston Children’s Hospital Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine and in MaineHealth pediatric and family medicine practices.
These research projects are one arm of Early Intervention in Psychosis Programming at Maine Medical Center initiated through the nationally-recognized Portland Identification and Early Referral (PIER) Program. The specialized team of clinicians and researchers provides an array of innovative clinical services, family and provider education, and regional and national trainings, as well as research. Learn more about supporting the PIER Program’s work through donations.
Team photo: Kristen Woodberry, Dave Weiss, EB Bernier, Abrey Feliccia, and Katherine Elacqua (former team member).
Johnson, KA, Shrier, LA, Eiduson, R, Parsa, N, Lilly, M, D’Angelo, E, Straus, JH, Woodberry, KA. Depressive symptom screening and endorsement of psychosis risk-related experiences in a diverse adolescent and young adult outpatient clinic in the US. Schizophr Res. 2021
Woodberry KA, Powers KS, Bryant C, Downing D, Verdi MB, Elacqua KM, Reuman ARL, Kennedy L, Shapiro DI, West ML, Huang D, Crump FM, Grivel MM, Blasco D, Herrera SN, Corcoran CM, Seidman LJ, Link BG, McFarlane WR, Yang LH. Emotional and stigma-related experiences relative to being told one is at risk for psychosis. Schizophr Res. 2021 Sep 28;238:44-51. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2021.09.017. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34598105.
Kennedy, L., Johnson, K., Cheng, J., Woodberry, K.A., A public health perspective on screening for psychosis within general practice clinics. Frontiers in Psychiatry. 10:1025. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2019.01025
Woodberry KA, Seidman, LJ, Bryant, C, Addington, J, Bearden, CE, Cadenhead, K, Cannon, TD, Cornblatt, BA, McGlashan, T, Mathalon, DH, Perkins, D, Tsuang, MT, Walker, EF, Woods, SW. Treatment precedes positive symptoms in North American adolescent and young adult clinical high risk cohort. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology 2018; 47(1); 69-78. PMCID: PMC5533647
Woodberry, KA, Kline, E, Giuliano, AJ. (2017). Schizophrenia spectrum disorders. In T.H.Ollendick, S.W. White, & B.A. White (Eds.) Oxford Handbook of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology. New York: Oxford University Press.
Woodberry, KA, Shapiro, DI, Bryant, C, Seidman, LJ. Progress and future directions in research on the psychosis prodrome: a review for clinicians. Harvard Reviews Psychiatry 2016; 24(2): 87-103. PMCID: PMC4870599
Woodberry, KA, Serur, R.A., Hallinan, S.B., Mesholam-Gately, R.I., Giuliano, A.J., Wojcik, J.D., Keshavan, M.S., Frazier, J.A., Goldstein, J.M., Shenton, M.E., McCarley, R.W., Seidman, L.J. Frequency and pattern of childhood symptom onset reported by first episode schizophrenia and clinical high risk youth. Schizophrenia Research 2014; 158: 45-51. PMCID: PMC4207713
Woodberry, KA, Gallo, KP, & Nock, MK. An experimental pilot study of response to invalidation in young women with features of borderline personality disorder. Psychiatry Research 2008; 157: 169-180.
Woodberry, KA, Giuliano, AJ, & Seidman, LJ. Premorbid IQ in schizophrenia: A meta-analytic review. The American Journal of Psychiatry 2008; 165: 579-587.
Woodberry, KA, Miller, AL, Glinski, J, Indik, J, & Mitchell, AG. Family therapy and dialectical behavior therapy with adolescents: Part II: A theoretical review. American Journal of Psychotherapy 2002; 56: 585-602.
The MaineHealth Institute for Research Team L to R: Kristen Woodberry, Dave Weiss, EB Bernier, Abrey Feliccia, and Katherine Elacqua (former team member).
The Woodberry Research Team is seeking 1-2 Postdoctoral Fellows to join the early psychosis research and clinical programming at MaineHealth. Accepting applications now for a July/August 2022 start. Apply Here
David Weiss, PhD, Research Fellow
Dave received his PhD in clinical psychology from The Ohio State University in August 2020 following the completion of his pre-doctoral internship at Yale University. He earned a B.A. in Psychology from Muhlenberg College. Dave has obtained extensive research and clinical training in first-episode psychosis and health psychology. His dissertation research examined how psychosocial factors such as stress and social support impact inflammatory and immune outcomes in patients with chronic health conditions. Clinically, he has delivered individual and group CBT and metacognitive remediation to young adults with psychosis. He has provided group social skills training and has piloted a group smoking cessation intervention in adults with psychotic disorders. These research and clinical experiences align with his career goal of examining and addressing the health disparities that emerge in young adults with psychosis.
Abrey Feliccia, BA, Research Assistant
Abrey completed her undergraduate degree in psychology with a minor in music from Ithaca College. At Ithaca College, Abrey was part of a research team that focused on clinical mental health topics such as childhood adversity and experiences in therapy. Her studies, research, and volunteer experiences led her to grow a deep interest in research involving serious mental illness.
After graduating from Ithaca College, Abrey spent three years working as a campus minister at Cornell University for the Cornell Catholic Community. Abrey joined Dr. Woodberry’s team as a research assistant in June of 2021. As a research assistant, she coordinates the team’s activities on a number of research studies, guides study participants through all study procedures, and assists with analyses and presentation of findings.
Elizabeth Bernier, Research Intern
Elizabeth “Eb” is a senior undergraduate student at the University of Southern Maine studying psychology and biology. She has been involved in research on various topics, including pharmacology, behavioral psychology, and social psychology throughout her undergraduate career. Currently, she is pursuing her own senior research in biopsychology. Eb joined Dr. Woodberry’s team at the Center for Psychiatric Research in January of 2020 as a Research Intern. She has played an important role in data management and visualization, writing of IRB materials, literature reviews for grants and manuscripts, and many other tasks.
In 2021, Eb participated in the MHIR Summer Student Research Program (SSRP), examining substance use and medication adherence in relation to psychotic symptoms. Eb is also co-facilitating a DBT group for teens and parents at Maine Medical Center’s Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Clinic.
Anna Cloutier, RN
Anna Cloutier is a Clinical Research Nurse with the Clinical Trials Office at MHIR and supports clinical trials in various areas such as Vascular Surgery, Interventional Radiology, Neurology (Epilepsy and MS), and Atopic Dermatitis in addition to Psychiatry. Anna received her BA from Western New England University and her BSN from the University of Southern Maine. She has over 20 years of experience in research working with sponsored trials as well as several NIH funded trials. Anna currently assists in conducting clinical interviews for our studies.
Multi-Site Team for Daily Life Study