Minnesota Center for Eating Disorders Research

The Minnesota Center for Eating Disorders Research at the University of Minnesota conducts research in the following areas: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, compulsive overeating, emotional eating, obesity, purging/self-induced vomiting, diet/weight loss, disordered eating, and eating disorder treatment.

The Minnesota Center for Eating Disorders Research at the University of Minnesota has provided treatment and conducted research in the area of eating disorders since the 1970’s. The program has been the recipient of several research grants from the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Mental Health, the Minnesota Obesity Center, and private foundations such as the McKnight Foundation. The investigators who oversee the clinic are internationally known for their research in this area.

Our program is committed to providing unique training opportunities in eating disorders research across professional development. As one of three sites that comprise the Midwest Regional Post-Doctoral Training Program in Eating Disorders Research, post-doctoral trainees have been integral members of our team since the training grant’s inception in 2009. In addition to post-undergraduate and graduate student training opportunities, which include study coordination and assessment, volunteer research assistants gain exposure to eating disorders and clinical research through their involvement with current research projects and educational seminars.

Faculty & Fellows

Scott J. Crow, MD

Dr. Crow is a Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota and the Director of the Midwest Regional Postdoctoral Training Program in Eating Disorders Research. Dr. Crow is also Chief Research Officer at The Emily Program. Dr. Crow is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Medical School and its Psychiatry Residency Training Program, where he was Chief Resident and Consult-Liaison Psychiatry Fellow. His research interests include the causes, course, and treatment of eating disorders. He is a past President of the Academy for Eating Disorders. Previously, he received a mid-career Independent Scientist Award from NIMH which focused on the treatment of eating disorders.

Carol B. Peterson, PhD, LP

Dr. Peterson is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Minnesota. She received her B.A. in Psychology from Yale University and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Minnesota.  She has authored more than 200 articles and book chapters and has received several federally-funded grants. Dr. Peterson is also Chief Training Officer of the Emily Program and Fellow of the Academy for Eating Disorders. Her research focuses on maintenance mechanisms and treatment outcome of eating disorders.

Emily Pisetsky, PhD, LP

Dr. Pisetsky is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota and Director of Assessment for the Minnesota Center for Eating Disorders Research. She received her B.A. in Psychology with high honors from Wesleyan University and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She completed her predoctoral clinical internship at the West Virginia University School of Medicine in Charleston, WV. Prior to her faculty appointment, Dr. Pisetsky completed a postdoctoral fellowship with the Midwest Regional Postdoctoral Training Program in Eating Disorders Research at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Pisetsky's primary research interests include investigating novel treatment for eating disorders and identifying factors associated with suicide risk in individuals with eating disorders.

Annie Haynos, PhD

Dr. Haynos is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota. She received her B.A. in psychology from The Catholic University of America in 2005. She completed her predoctoral clinical internship at the Duke University Medical Center and received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2015. Prior to her faculty appointment, Dr. Haynos completed the T32 Midwest Regional Postdoctoral Training Program in Eating Disorders Research at the University of Minnesota. Her research is currently funded through the National Institute of Mental Health and the Klarman Family Foundation for Eating Disorders Research. Dr. Haynos' primary research interests include identifying the neurobiological and behavioral decision-making mechanisms associated with risk and maintenance of eating disorders, especially anorexia nervosa, and developing precision medicine approaches to eating disorder treatment by targeting these mechanisms. 

T32 Post-Doctoral Fellows

Lisa Anderson, PhD

Dr. Anderson is a T32 Post Doctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota. She received her B. A. in psychology from the University of Minnesota in 2011. She received her Ph. D. in clinical psychology from the University at Albany, State University of New York, following completion of her predoctoral clinical internship at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in 2016-2017. Dr. Anderson’s primary research interests include the identification of mechanisms that underlie anxiety and eating disorder symptom development and maintenance (e.g., fear- and disgust-based learning, interoceptive awareness), as well as developing and optimizing interventions targeting anxiety-related mechanisms in eating disorders.

Melissa Simone, PhD

Dr. Simone is a T32 Post Doctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota. She received her B.A. and M.A. in psychology from the University of Hartford in 2012 and 2013, respectively. She received her Ph.D. in psychology, with an emphasis in Quantitative Methodology and Sociobehavioral Epidemiology from Utah State University in 2018. Dr. Simone’s primary research interests involve understanding the developmental processes underlying eating pathology and comorbid eating disorders and substance use through the application of advanced longitudinal methods. Melissa is also interested in the harmful impacts of weight stigmatization, as well as the dynamic processes that operate between adolescent friendships and unhealthy weight control.

Volunteer

Each year, the Minnesota Center for Eating Disorders Research offers training opportunities for individuals interested in volunteering within our program. In addition to educational seminars and individualized training on eating disorders, volunteer duties typically include conducting phone assessments with individuals who are interested in participating in our studies, entering study data, implementing recruitment strategies, assisting with other projects related to ongoing research studies, and participating in weekly lab meetings. If you are interested in being considered for a volunteer position, please send your resume/CV and a cover letter to mcedr@umn.edu that includes the following information:

  • Please explain your interest in our research
  • Offer a brief description of any previous research or clinical experience
  • Include your estimated availability, including how long you would ideally like to volunteer with our program and how many hours per week you would like to volunteer. Typically, volunteers commit to approximately 8-10 hours per week; however, depending on needs and qualifications, there are opportunities to volunteer with us more or less frequently
  • If you anticipate using this experience to fulfill a course requirement, please provide expectations related to the course (e.g., your weekly hours commitment)
  • If you are a student, please share with us your current overall grade point average

Please do not hesitate to contact us (mcedr@umn.edu; 612-625-1542) if you have any questions about volunteering with our lab.