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David Geffen School of Medicine

In Memoriam

Dr. Edward M. Ornitz, professor emeritus of psychiatry and biobehavioral sciences, died September 14, 2015. He was 86 years old. Dr. Ornitz joined the UCLA faculty in 1963, and he remained for 43 years, until his retirement in 2006. Dr. Ornitz was in the vanguard of biologically based child psychiatrists in the 1960s and ’70s. Going against the prevailing dogmas of psychoanalysis, he and his UCLA colleagues were among the first to demonstrate neurophysiologic differences in children with autism compared to healthy children, findings that helped establish its brain-based nature. Dr. Ornitz also performed seminal studies on the development of sleep and brain-stem responses in children and applied psychophysiologic measures to study children with posttraumatic stress disorder and children at risk for anxiety.


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