Leah Mayo


2010-present:       Ph.D., Neurobiology, University of Chicago

2011-2013:             M.S., Molecular Pathogenesis & Molecular Medicine, University of Chicago

2005-2009:            B.S., Neuroscience, University of Michigan

Research Interests

I'm interested in the relationship between environmental stimuli (cues) and drugs of abuse, and the potential influence these cues can have over future drug use. My current research involves the multidimensional assessment of responses to conditioned drug cues in healthy, non-dependent human research subjects. Using self-report, behavioral, and psychophysiological measures, I am exploring the acquisition and expression of responses to such cues, as well as variation in these responses across individuals. By studying the acquisition and expression of these responses in early phases of drug use, it is hoped that we can ascertain behavioral and/or pharmacological methods to attenuate or prevent these cue-elicited responses.


Mayo LM, Fraser D, Childs E, Momenan R, Hommer D, de Wit H, Heilig M (2013). Conditioned preference to a methamphetamine-associated contextual cue in humans. Neuropsychopharm 38(6), 921-929.

Wardle MC, Treadway MT, Mayo LM, Zald DH, de Wit H (2011). Amping up effort: Effects of dAmphetamine on human effort-based decision making. J Neurosci 31(46), 16597-165602.

García-Fuster MJ, Flagel SB, Mahmood T, Mayo LM, Thompson RC, Watson SJ, Akil H (2011). Decreased proliferation of adult hippocampal stem cells during cocaine withdrawal: possible role of the cell fate regulator FADD. Neuropsychopharm 36(11), 2303-2317.

Flagel SB, Clark JJ, Robinson TE, Mayo L, Czuj A, Willuhn I, Akers CA, Clinton SM, Phillips PEM, Akil H (2011). A selective role for dopamine in stimulus-reward learning. Nature 469, 53-57.

Book Chapters

Mayo, LM, Palmer, A A, de Wit, H. Subjective responses to drugs as intermediate phenotypes. In(Eds.) MacKillop, J., Munafo, M. Influences on Addiction: An Intermediate Phenotype Approach. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. In press.