Kimberly Leite-Morris, PhD
Assistant Professor
Boston University School of Medicine
Dept of Psychiatry
General Psychiatry Section

PhD, University of Rhode Island
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Dr. Leite-Morris is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Psychiatry and Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics at Boston University School of Medicine and directs a neurochemistry and behavioral neuroscience laboratory at the VA Boston Healthcare System. Dr. Leite-Morris’ primary research interests are in determining the neurochemical mechanisms that underlie the anticipation, intense “craving” and repeated consumption of ethanol and substance abuse. She has established a rodent model of ethanol-self administration paired with current methods of in vivo microdialysis that procedurally separates and quantifies neurotransmitter levels during the different elements of the addiction process. Her methods incorporate a pharmacological approach utilizing novel therapeutic agents including novel positive allosteric modulators of the GABA receptor that culminate in alterations of dopamine, GABA and glutamate.

Dr. Leite-Morris has established a behavioral phenotyping laboratory at the VABHS to examine fear conditioning and stress as they relate to alcohol-directed behaviors in genetically modified mice.Dr. Leite-Morris’ collaborative projects include opiate reward and extinction, fear conditioning, and alcohol and substance abuse in penetrating brain injury and shock wave. Dr. Leite-Morris received her doctorate from the University of Rhode Island in the Department of Biochemisty and Molecular Genetics and completed her NIAAA NRSA Postdoctoral Fellowship at Brown University’s Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies where she remains an Affiliate Faculty member. She is supported by a grant from NIAAA. Interested students can contact Dr. Leite-Morris at

VA Boston Healthcare System

Monitor for multiple biomarkers for detection of alcohol consumption
09/15/2015 - 06/30/2018 (PI)
Yellowstone Scientific Instruments NIH NIAAA

Personnel Agreement for Research Services of Dr. Kimberly Leite-Morris (Dr. Gary Kaplan)
12/01/2015 - 09/30/2017 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel agreement for research services of Dr. Kimberly Leite-Morris (Dr. Alpasian Dedegoglu)
03/01/2015 - 06/30/2017 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel agreement for research services of Kimberly Leite-Morris (Dr. Gary Kaplan)
03/01/2015 - 06/30/2015 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel Agreement for Kimberly Leite-Morris
08/01/2014 - 12/31/2014 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel agreement for research services of Kimberly Leite-Morris
12/01/2011 - 12/31/2014 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel agreement for research services of Kimberly Leite-Morris
09/15/2013 - 09/14/2014 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel Agreement for Research Services of Kimberly Leite-Morris
11/01/2012 - 09/14/2014 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Personnel agreement for research services of Kimberly Leite-Morris
03/01/2012 - 03/31/2014 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. Maccioni P, Vargiolu D, Thomas AW, Malherbe P, Mugnaini C, Corelli F, Leite-Morris KA, Gessa GL, Colombo G. Inhibition of alcohol self-administration by positive allosteric modulators of the GABAB receptor in rats: lack of tolerance and potentiation of baclofen. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2015 May; 232(10):1831-41. PMID: 25420609; DOI: 10.1007/s00213-014-3815-8;.
  2. Leite-Morris KA, Kobrin KL, Guy MD, Young AJ, Heinrichs SC, Kaplan GB. Extinction of opiate reward reduces dendritic arborization and c-Fos expression in the nucleus accumbens core. Behav Brain Res. 2014 Apr 15; 263:51-9.View Related Profiles. PMID: 24406724; DOI: 10.1016/j.bbr.2013.12.041;.
  3. Heinrichs SC, Leite-Morris KA, Rasmusson AM, Kaplan GB. Repeated valproate treatment facilitates fear extinction under specific stimulus conditions. Neurosci Lett. 2013 Sep 27; 552:108-13.View Related Profiles. PMID: 23916657; DOI: 10.1016/j.neulet.2013.07.035;.
  4. Heinrichs SC, Leite-Morris KA, Guy MD, Goldberg LR, Young AJ, Kaplan GB. Dendritic structural plasticity in the basolateral amygdala after fear conditioning and its extinction in mice. Behav Brain Res. 2013 Jul 1; 248:80-4.View Related Profiles. PMID: 23570859; DOI: 10.1016/j.bbr.2013.03.048;.
  5. Nic Dhonnchadha BÁ, Lin A, Leite-Morris KA, Kaplan GB, Man HY, Kantak KM. Alterations in expression and phosphorylation of GluA1 receptors following cocaine-cue extinction learning. Behav Brain Res. 2013 Feb 1; 238:119-23.View Related Profiles. PMID: 23085477; PMCID: PMC3542979; DOI: 10.1016/j.bbr.2012.10.012;.
  6. Nic Dhonnchadha BÁ, Lovascio BF, Shrestha N, Lin A, Leite-Morris KA, Man HY, Kaplan GB, Kantak KM. Changes in expression of c-Fos protein following cocaine-cue extinction learning. Behav Brain Res. 2012 Sep 1; 234(1):100-6.View Related Profiles. PMID: 22721675; PMCID: PMC3412160; DOI: 10.1016/j.bbr.2012.06.010;.
  7. Fitzgerald DM, Charness ME, Leite-Morris KA, Chen S. Effects of ethanol and NAP on cerebellar expression of the neural cell adhesion molecule L1. PLoS One. 2011; 6(9):e24364.View Related Profiles. PMID: 21931691; PMCID: PMC3169602; DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0024364;.
  8. Kaplan GB, Leite-Morris KA, Fan W, Young AJ, Guy MD. Opiate sensitization induces FosB/?FosB expression in prefrontal cortical, striatal and amygdala brain regions. PLoS One. 2011; 6(8):e23574.View Related Profiles. PMID: 21886798; PMCID: PMC3160315; DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0023574;.
  9. Heinrichs SC, Leite-Morris KA, Carey RJ, Kaplan GB. Baclofen enhances extinction of opiate conditioned place preference. Behav Brain Res. 2010 Mar 5; 207(2):353-9.View Related Profiles. PMID: 19840820; DOI: 10.1016/j.bbr.2009.10.013;.
  10. Maccioni P, Carai MA, Kaupmann K, Guery S, Froestl W, Leite-Morris KA, Gessa GL, Colombo G. Reduction of alcohol's reinforcing and motivational properties by the positive allosteric modulator of the GABA(B) receptor, BHF177, in alcohol-preferring rats. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2009 Oct; 33(10):1749-56. PMID: 19572981; DOI: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2009.01012.x;.
Showing 10 of 23 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 23 publications over 14 distinct years, with a maximum of 2 publications in 1991 and 1998 and 1999 and 2003 and 2009 and 2011 and 2012 and 2013 and 2014


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