Alexandre Y. Dombrovski, MD

  • Associate Professor, Psychiatry
  • Director, Decision Neuroscience and Psychopathology Lab




Personal Website

website link



Education & Training

MD, Sechenov Moscow Medical Academy (1999)


100 N. Bellefield St, BT 742
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Research Interest Summary

My lab studies human decision processes and how they are altered in mental disorders

Our lab studies individual differences in reward learning and decision processes that contribute to psychopathology, including borderline personality, depression and suicide. We view these individual differences as parameters of neural computation. The lab’s theoretical interests are in the exploration/exploitation dilemma and in elaborating a formal learning theory account of interpersonal dysfunction. Our lab uses learning experiments, economic exchange games, functional neuroimaging, and computational modeling. We conduct large-scale studies of reward learning in behavior and of social decision-making in borderline personality disorder.  

Brown VM, Wilson J, Hallquist MN, Szanto K, Dombrovski AY*. Ventromedial prefrontal value signals and functional connectivity during decision-making in suicidal behavior and impulsivity.  Neuropsychopharmacology, published online Feb. 8, 2020.


Dombrovski AY*, Hallquist MN, Brown VM, Wilson J, Szanto K. Value-Based Choice, Contingency Learning, and Suicidal Behavior in Mid- and Late-Life Depression. Biological Psychiatry. 2019 Mar 15;85(6):506–516. PMCID: PMC6380943


Hallquist MN*, Dombrovski AY* (equal contribution). Selective maintenance of value information helps resolve the exploration/exploitation dilemma. Cognition. 2019 Feb 1;183:226–243. PMCID: PMC6328060


Manning EE, Dombrovski AY, Torregrossa MM, Ahmari SE. Impaired instrumental reversal learning is associated with increased medial prefrontal cortex activity in Sapap3 knockout mouse model of compulsive behavior. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2018 Dec 26;1. PMCID: in process 


Chase HW, Kumar P, Eickhoff SB, Dombrovski AY*. Reinforcement learning models and their neural correlates: An activation likelihood estimation meta-analysis. Cognitive Affective and Behavioral Neuroscience. 2015; PMCID: PMC4437864 


Dombrovski AY, Szanto K, Clark L, Aizenstein HJ, Chase HW, Reynolds CF, Siegle GJ. Corticostriatothalamic reward prediction error signals and executive control in late-life depression. Psychological medicine. 2014 Oct 16;1–12. PMCID: PMC4380546 


Dombrovski AY, Szanto K, Clark L, Reynolds CF, Siegle GJ. Reward Signals, Attempted Suicide, and Impulsivity in Late-Life Depression. JAMA psychiatry. 2013 Aug 7;70(10):1020–1030. PMCID: PMC3859132