Dr. Francesca Filbey is a Professor and Director of Cognitive Neuroscience Research of Addictive Disorders at the Center for BrainHealth, School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences at The University of Texas at Dallas, and an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Department of Psychiatry. She also holds the Endowed Bert Moore Chair in BrainHealth and is an Associate Provost at UT Dallas.

Over the last 15 years, Dr. Filbey has garnered significant federal and non-federal awards for her research and has had several publications including approximately 80 peer-reviewed scientific articles, an authored book, an edited book, and, several book chapters.  She is on the editorial board of the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse and Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, a review editor for Frontiers in Behavioral and Psychiatric Genetics, and has been a guest editor for several scientific journals. Dr. Filbey is an active grant reviewer for several national and international funding agencies, including chartered membership in the NIH Neural Basis of Psychopathology, Addictions and Sleep Disorders Study Section (NPAS). She is also a voted Associate Member of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology and a Member of the College on Problems of Drug Dependence.

The overarching goal of Dr. Filbey’s research is to advance the understanding of biobehavioral mechanisms related to dopaminergic reward dysfunction (e.g., addiction) towards the improvement of early detection and intervention.


She incorporates translational approaches from the fields of cognitive neuroscience, neuroimaging, genetics, neuropharmacology, psychology, and psychiatry. Her lab employs multimodal tools including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), electroencephalography (EEG), neuromodulation and genome-wide studies to examine cognitive mechanisms across populations of substance abusers, binge eaters and risk-taking youth and adults.

Dr. Filbey combines the latest genomic and neuroimaging approaches to determine neurobiological markers for addiction. These projects move beyond simple classifications of presence or absence of a disorder by applying a “deep phenotyping” approach that consists of continuous variables from cognitive assessments in addition to biological processes. To that end, Dr. Filbey utilizes a stepwise approach that (1) defines the neural mechanisms that underlie behavioral symptoms of addictive disorders, and (2) determines the individual variability (genetic and environmental factors) that modulate these mechanisms, placing one at risk for these disorders. As a whole, these projects aim to advance understanding of biobehavioral mechanisms of addictive disorders.Dr. Filbey received her PhD in Experimental Neuropsychology from the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, and a postdoctoral fellowship in Human Neuroimaging at the National Institute of Mental Health, NIH in Bethesda, MD.

Learn more about Dr. Filbey’s research.