Ayman Fanous, MD
Chair, Department Psychiatry
Professor, Psychiatry

Nicole Haas
Phone: 602-827-2972

Ayman Fanous, MD


  • Postdoctoral Research Fellowship: Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics, Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics, 2013
  • Research Internship: Psychopharmacology, New York University, 1999
  • Residency: Psychiatry, New York University, 1999
  • MD: Virginia Commonwealth University, School of Medicine, 1995

Brief Bio

Dr. Ayman Fanous is a Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix. Prior to coming to UA COM-P in 2021, he was Chair of Psychiatry at SUNY Downstate Medical Center for five years.  

He is a clinician-scientist, educator, and leader who has distinguished himself in the field of psychiatric genomics research. For over 20 years, Dr. Fanous has applied linkage, candidate gene, re-sequencing, genome-wide association, and next-generation sequencing methods to uncover genetic risk factors for psychiatric illness.

He has been deeply involved in several of the most impactful initiatives in this field over the last 15 years, which have led to publications in Nature and other high-impact journals. These include the International Schizophrenia Consortium, Psychiatric Genomics Consortium (PGC), Bipolar Sequencing Consortium, and Million Veteran Program (MVP). He currently co-leads the PGC Schizophrenia Phenotype Workgroup, which examines genetic influences on individual variation in clinical and course features of the illness. This work is highly collaborative and involves research groups and cohorts from many countries in Europe and Asia.

Over the last several years, Dr. Fanous has also been leading the phenotypic analyses of the Genomic Psychiatry Cohort (GPC), for both bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. The GPC is currently in a new phase of recruitment, specifically of participants of Latino and African ancestry. Dr. Fanous has been a VA investigator for the majority of his career. His VA-funded projects have included whole-genome sequencing studies of multiplex families with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder from the Azores and Madeira. Currently, he is PI on a project which aims to identify genetic and environmental risk factors for antipsychotic-induced adverse effects in the Million Veteran Program using AI and machine learning, in collaboration with partners at the Los Alamos and Pacific Northwest National Laboratories. Such research will hopefully contribute to the development of Precision Psychiatry modalities, which will maximize benefits and minimize adverse effects in the treatment of individuals with severe mental illness.

Research Interests

Precision Medicine - Neuropsychiatric Disorders - Health Disparities - Genomics - Genetics - Clinical Psychology