Adjunct Professor, Psychology

Specialization in Clinical Criminology, University of Milan
Specialization in Psychiatry, University of Milan
Degree in Medicine and Surgery,​​​​​​​ University of Milan


Professor Cristina Colombo serves as the Chief of the Mood Disorders Unit at the IRCCS San Raffaele Hospital in Milan and is a Full Professor of Psychiatry at the Vita-Salute San Raffaele University. She also heads the Specialization School in Psychiatry and the Master's program in Forensic Psychopathology and Clinical Criminology at the same institution.

Her educational journey began at the University of Milan, where she graduated in Medicine and Surgery in 1985, specializing in Psychiatry four years later. In 1994, she registered as a Psychotherapist and, in 2001, earned a specialization in Clinical Criminology. Between 2000 and 2003, she designed and coordinated the European Social Fund course on the training of researchers and operators in non-pharmacological biological interventions in the treatment of depression and the International Workshop on Sleep Deprivation and Chronobiology of Depression.

Throughout her illustrious career, she has conducted extensive research, primarily focusing on computerized electroencephalography techniques, brain mapping, and brain imaging techniques (CT, MRI, PET). She is also a member of the operational committee of the High Field Magnetic Resonance Center of Excellence (CERMAC) for the study of functional imaging applied to psychiatry.

Professor Colombo collaborates with numerous journals as a Reviewer and is the Editor of the Affective Disorders section and the special issue Evidence-Based Assessment of Mood Disorders for Clinical Neuropsychiatry, Journal of Treatment Evaluation. Since 1998, she has been on the scientific committee of the journal Psychiatry and Analytical Psychotherapy. Her contributions have been featured in Genes, Brain and Behavior, Psychopharmacology, Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, Neuropsychopharmacology, Journal of Affective Disorders, and Psychiatry Research.

She organizes international workshops on psychiatric topics, such as new sleep deprivation techniques, chronobiology, and depression. Her commitment to elevating the field of psychiatry and her extensive contributions to research and education make her a distinguished figure at Franklin University Switzerland and in the global scientific community.


2023-2024 Courses

PSY 210 Cognitive Psychology SPRING 2024


A Homer 1 gene variant influences brain structure and function, lithium effects on white matter, and antidepressant response uin bipolar disorder: a multimodal genetic imaging study
Benedetti F., Poletti S., Locatelli C., Mazza E., Lorenzi C., Vitali A., Riberto M., Brioschi S., Vai B., Bollettini I., Melloni E., Aggio V., Falini A., De Bartolomeis A., Colombo C.
Progress in Neuropsychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry, 81 (2018) 88-95 

Night sleep influences white matter microstructure in bipolar depression
Benedetti F., Melloni EMT, Dallaspezia S., Bolletini I., Locatelli C, Poletti S., Colombo C.
J affective Disorders 15;218:380-387 (2017)

Effects of CLOCK gene variants and early stress on hopelessness and suicide in bipolar depression
Benedetti F., Riccaboni R., Dallaspezia S., Locatelli C., Smeraldi E., Colombo C.
Chronobiology International,  Posted online on July 23, 2015 

White matter microstructure in bipolar disorder is influenced by the serotonin transporter gene polymorphism 5-HTTLPR
Benedetti F., Bollettini I., Poletti S., Locatelli C., Lorenzi C., Pirovano A., Smeraldi E., Colombo C.
(2015) Genes, Brain and Behavior, 14:3, 238-250

Lithium and GSK-3β promoter gene variants influence cortical gray matter volumes in bipolar disorder
Benedetti F., Poletti S., Radaelli D., Locatelli C., Pirovano A., Lorenzi C., Vai B., Bollettini I., Falini A., Smeraldi E., Colombo C.
Psychopharmacology DOI 10.1007/s00213-014-3770-4 (2015)  

Rapid treatment response of suicidal symptoms to lithium, sleep deprivation, and light therapy (chronotherapeutics) in drug-resistant bipolar depression
Benedetti F., Riccaboni R., Locatelli C., Poletti S., Dallaspezia S., Colombo C. (2014)
J Clin Psychiatry J Clin Psychiatry 2014 75(2): 133-140

Lithium and GSK3-β promoter gene variants influence white matter microstructure in bipolar disorder
Benedetti F., Bollettini I., Barberi I., Radaelli D., Poletti S., Locatelli C., Pirovano A., Lorenzi C., Colombo C., Smeraldi E.
Neuropsychopharmacology, 38 (2): 313-27

Sleep deprivation in mood disorders.
Benedetti F., Colombo C.
Neuropsychobiology, 64:141-151 (2011)  

Acute antidepressant response to sleep deprivation combined with light therapy is influenced by the catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(108/158)Met polymorphism
Benedetti F, Barbini B, Bernasconi A, Fulgosi MC, Dallaspezia S, Gavinelli C, Locatelli C, Lorenzi C, Pirovano A, Radaelli D, Smeraldi E, Colombo C.
J Affect Disord.121(1-2):68-72. Epub 2009 Jun 11.

The catechol-O-methyltransferase Val(108/158)Met polymorphism affects antidepressant response to paroxetine in a naturalistic setting
Benedetti F., Colombo C., Pirovano A., Marino E., Smeraldi E.
Psychopharmacology, 203(1):155-60. (2009)