Genes, Environment, and Health Branch (GEH)
Cindy Lawler, Ph.D.
Cindy Lawler, Ph.D., is acting chief of the Cellular, Organs, and Systems Pathobiology Branch in the Division of Extramural Research and Training. She is the lead NIEHS representative for extramural autism activities. This includes responsibilities as a program official for the NIH-funded Early Autism Risk Longitudinal Investigation (EARLI) study, the Childhood Autism Risk from Genes and Environment (CHARGE) study, the Markers of Autism Risk in Babies-Learning Early Signs (MARBLES), and a multidisciplinary center that addresses environmental contributors to autism.
In addition to her programmatic role in autism activities, Lawler has primary responsibility for the NIEHS extramural portfolio of research in Parkinson’s disease research. She developed and manages the Centers for Neurodegeneration Science Program, which supports highly integrated teams of investigators studying genetic and environmental risks for Parkinson's disease.
Lawler received her Ph.D. in experimental psychology at Northeastern University and received postdoctoral training in the Brain and Development Research Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH). Prior to joining NIEHS, Lawler was a faculty member in the UNC-CH Department of Psychiatry and the Program in Toxicology and held an adjunct appointment in the Department of Biostatistics. She served as a Principal Investigator on an NIH-supported research grant in behavioral neuroscience, with an emphasis on dopamine receptor pharmacology and development of novel pharmacologic agents to treat diseases and disorders related to altered dopamine neurotransmission.