Dr. Lewy is internationally known as a pioneer in the growing field of human chronobiology. He has published ground-breaking articles on the measurement of human plasma melatonin and the use of bright light as a therapy for depression and sleep disorders. He was the first to use bright light to treat patients suffering from seasonal affective disorder, chronobiologic sleep disorders, and jet lag. His work has given psychiatry a new perspective on the physiology of sleep and mood disorders, and is relevant to the problems of blind people, as well as individuals whose sleep patterns are disrupted by shift work or jet travel. Dr. Lewy has made major contributions to the field of melatonin physiology and light. His discoveries have led the way to a new understanding of chronobiologic sleep and mood disorders and have important implications for the field of neuropsychiatry.
Dr. Lewy is currently researching the phase-shifting effects of melatonin in seasonal affective disorder. He is also investigating how a daily dose of melatonin can synchronize the sleep cycles of totally blind people who have no light perception.
In 2004, Dr. Lewy was awarded the Richard H. Phillips Professorship in Biological Psychiatry to recognize and support his ongoing research interests and to allow him to widen the scope of his studies.
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