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Karen J. Parker, PhD

Karen J. Parker, PhD

Associate Professor (Research) of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (Major Laboratories and Clinical Translational Neurosciences Incubator)
Postdoctoral, Stanford University, Psychiatry Neuroscience
Ph.D., University of Michigan, Biological Psychology
A.B., University of Michigan, Psychology
Dr. Parker is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University where she directs the Social Neurosciences Research Program. Dr. Parker's research expertise is the biology of social functioning, with a particular interest in oxytocin and vasopressin signaling pathways. Her preclinical research program focuses on developing novel monkey models of social impairments; her clinical research program encompasses biomarker discovery and therapeutic testing in autism and other brain disorders.

Dr. Parker received her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Michigan and completed postdoctoral training at Stanford University. Dr. Parker joined the Stanford faculty in 2007. She is an Affiliate Scientist at the California National Primate Research Center, a Member of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, and a Kavli Fellow of the US National Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Parker’s research program has been supported by multiple funding agencies including the NIH, the Simons Foundation, NARSAD, and the Weston Havens Foundation. Dr. Parker serves on the Editorial Board of Psychoneuroendocrinology, the scientific advisory board for the Stanford Autism Center at Packard Children’s Hospital, and on various national (e.g., NIH and NSF) and international (e.g., Medical Research Council) grant review committees. She has also participated as an invited expert at NIH workshops focused on neurodevelopmental disorders.

Dr. Parker was born in Boulder, CO and grew up in suburban Chicago, IL. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband (a high-tech executive), her three children, and two Australian shepherds.