Current and Recent Research Track Residents

Adrian Zhubi, MD
Adult Psychiatry Neuroscience Research Track Graduate 2014

A graduate of the University of Pristina in Kosova, became interested in psychiatry, seeing the enormous need for mental health services for the victims of war in Kosovo.  He did an elective in PTSD at Dartmouth, and after graduation from medical school, came to UIC to pursue epigenetic neuroscience research in Drs. Costa's and Guidotti’s lab, which resulted in numerous publications.  Playing in the National Basketball League of Kosovo, and coaching the youth team, he found that he enjoys working with children and came to understand sports as an educational tool. Adrian still returns to the basketball court for fun, plays classical violin, and enjoys blues, jazz, and rock music. In the past 2 years in the residency, Adrian has been working in his  Master’s  in Neuroscience thesis project .The focus of this project is to  study  epigenetic mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of Autism spectrum disorder using post-mortem human brain samples. Results of this research have been presented in American Psychiatric Association meeting, Society for Neuroscience meeting and Albanian-American Medical Society meeting.


Darshan Patel, MD
Integrated Adult-Child-Research Graduate 2014

My broad interest is to understand the complex effects of socioeconomic environment on the mental health needs of children and families in urban communities in order to support community-based efforts at preventing the late life consequence of early childhood adversity. I am also interested in understanding the specific cognitive and affective changes that may occur related to an impoverished early childhood socioeconomic environment and identifying community-based efforts that can promote cognitive and affective development in children who face early childhood adversity.


Christina V. Floreani, MD, PhD
Adult Psychiatry Neuroscience Research Track PGY4 Resident

Christina graduated from the MD-PhD program at UIC College of Medicine, where she conducted neuroscience research on ion channels and developed a clinical interest in psychiatry. Her ion channel research worked to elucidate the neuronal function and signal transduction mechanism of activation of TRPC channels in the context of rat ventral tegmental area dopaminergic neurons and dorsal raphe nuclei serotonergic neurons. Clinically, Christina is interested in addiction and psychosis with the plans to reconcile this with her research background and ultimately conduct studies on the epigenetic effects of environmental stressors or protective factors on the development of addiction or psychosis. Outside of work, Christina adores playing, dancing, exploring, eating, or reading with her two children and husband.


Reza Tadayon-Nejad, MD, PhD
Adult Psychiatry Neuroscience Research Track PGY4 Resident

Reza is a graduate of Ahwaz University of Medical sciences, Ahwaz, Iran. He became interested in basic neuroscience during his medical education. He immigrated to Canada to pursue his interest in electrophysiology and molecular neuroscience in 2006. Reza graduated with a PhD in Neuroscience in 2011 from University of Calgary. His research focus was on neural coding and synaptic regulation of spike output in deep cerebellar nuclear neurons. Reza is fascinated by the new emerging approach of circuit-based psychiatry. He is currently studying network structural and functional changes in late-life depression by using Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) and resting-state functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) techniques.


Kelley A. Volpe, MD
Integrated Adult-Child-Research, PGY4 Resident

Kelley is a resident in the Integrated Adult/Child and Research track.  She graduated from medical school at The UIC College of Medicine.  Her interest in child psychiatry was stimulated during her undergraduate studies while working as a research assistant at the Yale Child Study Center in the Tourettes Syndrome and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Clinic.  Kelley spent time teaching for Americorps, and she enjoys being a mentor to young girls in a youth club. She plans to build on her interest in education through research, specifically as it relates to how physicians and trainees learn, and how it can be applied to curriculum to improve treatment of psychiatric illnesses in primary care.  She plans to pursue a Master’s in Health Professional Education during her residency.  In her free time she enjoys spending time with her husband and new baby, and dining at the many excellent restaurants Chicago has to offer.

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