Mary Ann Pelleymounter is a Program Director in the Division of Translational Research at NINDS. She leads the HEAL Pain Therapeutics Development Program and developed the NINDS and HEAL Biomarker Programs. She has over 25 years of experience in scientific research and over 20 years of experience in drug discovery and development. Mary Ann’s scientific training is in the field of behavioral neuroscience with a focus on age-related cognitive dysfunction, neurodegeneration and neuropharmacology. She received her PhD at the University of Colorado and conducted her post-doctoral research at the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) in the laboratory of Dr. Michela Gallagher. Following her post-doctoral work, Dr. Pelleymounter focused her research on drug discovery and development in the therapeutic areas of neurodegeneration and neuropsychiatry until the mid-1990s when she shifted her research emphasis to obesity and metabolic disease therapeutics. Since that time, Dr. Pelleymounter moved to scientific leadership roles, directing in vivo pharmacology at Neurocrine Biosciences and leading the biology drug discovery effort for obesity therapeutics at Bristol Myers Squibb. During Dr. Pelleymounter’s tenure as Director of Obesity Therapeutics, her department progressed multiple compounds into clinical development. Dr. Pelleymounter has over 60 published original research articles, reviews and book chapters, is the author of multiple published patents relating to the discovery and use of leptin and has received numerous research grants and awards in the fields of cognition, aging and neuropsychiatry.