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Photo of Dr Paul Stokes

Dr Paul Stokes

Job title Clinical Reader in Mood Disorders and Psychopharmacology

Areas of expertise

• Treatment resistant depression
• Bipolar disorder
• Cognitive impairment in mood disorders
• Treating mood disorders and co-morbid addictions
• Mood disorders in older adults
• Neuroimaging including fMRI and PET
• Aviation psychiatry


Dr Stokes studied medicine at the University of Birmingham where he first became interested in the brain chemistry of mental health disorders as part of an intercalated degree in Pharmacology. He completed general adult and old age psychiatry clinical training at the Bethlem and Maudsley hospitals and was a Clinical Research Fellow with the Psychiatry group, MRC Clinical Sciences Centre, where he used PET neurochemical imaging to investigate the effects of risk factors for psychosis on the human dopamine neurotransmitter system. In 2009, Dr Stokes joined the Neuropsychopharmacology group, Imperial College London, as a Senior Clinical Research Fellow and Consultant Psychiatrist where he worked with Prof David Nutt and Prof Anne Lingford-Hughes to further investigate the dopamine and GABA neurotransmitter systems in neuropsychiatric disorders and addictions. Dr Stokes obtained his PhD in 2011 from Imperial College London and in 2013 was awarded the Royal Society of Medicine Psychiatry Section Mental Health Research Prize.

Dr Stokes joined the Centre for Affective Disorders, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London in September 2013 and was appointed as Reader in Mood Disorders and Psychopharmacology in 2019. Dr Stokes’ main research interest is to use neuroimaging to better understand the neurochemical brain mechanisms which mediate bipolar disorder and related co-morbid addictions. He is also very interested in the use of clinical trials and functional neuroimaging to assess treatments to improve mood and cognitive symptoms in mood disorders. Dr Stokes is a member of the RCPsych Psychopharmacology committee, where he has contributed to national guidelines on Valproate use and MAOI prescribing, and a member of the UK Government Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs.

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