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Dr D.A.J.P. Denys has been appointed Professor of Psychiatry in the Faculty of Medicine (AMC-UvA).

Dr D.A.J.P. Denys (1965) has been appointed Professor of Psychiatry in the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Amsterdam (AMC-UvA).

Damiaan Denys conducts clinical and neurobiological research into anxiety disorders and obsessive compulsive disorders. His scientific research is characterized by a translational approach and makes use of animal models, neuroimaging, and neurogenetics. A particular focus of his research is the development of deep brain stimulation (DBS) for psychiatric disorders.

In the near future, Denys will focus his research on the neurobiology of complex human emotions. In order to develop connections between psychiatry and the fundamental neurosciences, he will employ a new approach which instead of examining disorders concentrates on broader concepts such as anhedonia, reward learning, and fear conditioning. To this end, he aims to develop a renewed integration between philosophy and psychiatry.

Denys studied Philosophy and Medicine at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Catholic University of Leuven) and obtained his doctorate cum laude from Utrecht University with a dissertation entitled On certainty: studies in obsessive compulsive disorder. He has worked in the Psychiatry Department of the University Medical Centre Utrecht since 2002, first as a staff member and then as head of the Anxiety Disorders division. Denys has obtained a number of research grants, including a Veni grant for his project Neuroimaging and deep brain stimulation in obsessive compulsive disorder and a ‘clinical fellow' grant from the NWO for his research entitled D-cycloseine and fear extinction in obsessive compulsive disorder. Denys received the Ramaer Medal from the Dutch Association of Psychiatry for outstanding clinical research in 2005.