Dr. Alan M. Jacobson received his B.A. in Religious Studies from Yale University in 1965 and M.D. from the University of Chicago Medical School in 1969. He completed a residency in Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital and remained on the Harvard Medical School Faculty, becoming Professor of Psychiatry with Tenure in 1996. He directed the Joslin Diabetes Center’s Behavioral Research and Clinical Mental Health Programs and served as Chief Medical Officer of the Joslin Clinic, a multi-specialty group practice. In 2009, he relocated to Winthrop Hospital to serve as Chief Research Officer and Director of its Research Institute. In 2019, Winthrop merged into the NYU Langone Health System and formed the new NYU Long Island School Medicine where Dr. Jacobson is now Professor in the Foundations of Medicine Department and Associate Dean for Research. He continues to direct the Research Institute.
Dr. Jacobson’s research has focused on the psychological, social, and central nervous system effects of diabetes. His studies have examined the impacts of diabetes across the lifespan. He has used neuro-imaging techniques to examine the effects of diabetes and metabolism on the brain and identify the causes of these alterations. These studies use insulin clamp methods to examine acute affects of insulin and glucose variation on brain chemistry and functioning as well as chronic effects of diabetes on brain structure and cognitive decline. He has also carried out studies to improve diabetes outcomes using biomedical, educational and behavioral interventions in single-site and multi-site trials. This research includes the multi-site national Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT) and its natural history follow-up study Epidemiology of Diabetes Control and Complications (EDIC). He has led the effort to design and implement the cognitive and quality-of-life end point assessments for DCCT and EDIC and has been the lead investigator for the longterm cognitive follow-up of the cohort. Currently, he is studying the interacting effects of aging and type 1 diabetes using cognitive and MRI assessments. This includes use of artificial intelligence/machine learning techniques to identify patterns of brain alterations predictive of variations in cognitive decline.
Dr. Jacobson has over 200 publications and has been continuously funded by multiple grants by NIH as a Principal and Co-Principal Investigator since 1978. Throughout his career, he has mentored junior faculty and trainees in the development of their academic careers.