Jay Gottfried

Jay Gottfried is the Arthur H. Rubenstein University Professor, with joint faculty appointments in the Department of Neurology in the Perelman School of Medicine and the Department of Psychology in the School of Arts and Sciences. Gottfried is a world-renowned neuroscientist whose research focuses on unlocking the mysteries of our sense of smell.

Neuroscience & Psychology

jay gottfried

President Amy Gutmann and Provost Vincent Price are pleased to announce the appointment of Jay Gottfried as the University of Pennsylvania’s eighteenth Penn Integrates Knowledge University Professor, effective July 1, 2017.  

A world-renowned neuroscientist, Gottfried will be the Arthur H. Rubenstein University Professor, with joint faculty appointments in the Department of Neurology in the Perelman School of Medicine and the Department of Psychology in the School of Arts and Sciences

“Jay Gottfried is a pioneer in research that is unlocking mysteries of our sense of smell.  His pathbreaking work already has brought important new insights into the neuroscience of smell by taking a boldly interdisciplinary approach to understand the broad range of physical and psychological dimensions of the phenomenon,” said Penn President Amy Gutmann. 

“Jay’s research has tremendously exciting implications across many disciplines, not only within the Perelman School of Medicine and the School of Arts and Sciences where he will hold faculty appointments, but extending also to Penn’s School of Veterinary MedicineSchool of Engineering and Applied Science, and Annenberg School for Communication. This kind of integrated knowledge and discovery defines the work of our PIK University Professors. We are delighted to welcome Jay back to Penn, where he previously served a noteworthy residency in Adult Neurology.”

Gottfried’s research studies how the human brain translates perceptions into smells (e.g., the smell of a rose or a wet dog). He brings together a wide range of approaches and techniques – including physiological recordings, multivariate pattern analysis, and computational modeling – to understand how the brain encodes and stores odor information and how emotion, learning, and experience affect this perceptual and neural information.

Gottfried is currently Professor of Neurology at the Feinberg School of Medicine and an affiliated faculty member of the Department of Psychology in the Weinberg School of Arts at Sciences at Northwestern University, where he has taught since 2004. His award-winning work has been supported by multiple ongoing grants from the National Institutes of Health (among others) and published across such leading journals as Science, Neuron, and the Journal of Neuroscience. 

He held a three-year Neurology residency at Penn from 1998 to 2001, followed by a prestigious three-year fellowship from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at University College London, where he began his research in olfactory neuroscience and human neuroimaging. He earned an MD and PhD (1997) from New York University and an AB in Molecular Biology magna cum laude (1989) from Princeton University

“Jay Gottfried is a dynamic teacher, mentor, and collaborator who is strongly committed to innovative and translational research,” said Provost Price. “At the forefront of new approaches in neuroscience, he works closely with colleagues across multiple disciplines and is dedicated to training new generations of students, who will lead the scientific and medical advances of the future. I am confident that he will be a galvanizing force for neuroscience research across our campus in the years ahead.”

The Penn Integrates Knowledge program was launched by President Gutmann in 2005 as a University-wide initiative to recruit exceptional faculty members whose research and teaching exemplify the integration of knowledge across disciplines and who are appointed in at least two Schools at Penn.

The Arthur H. Rubenstein University Professorship honors Arthur H. Rubenstein, MBBCh, for his exemplary service as the Executive Vice President of the University of Pennsylvania for the Health System and Dean of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine from September 2001 to July 2011. Dr. Rubenstein, now Professor of Medicine at the Perelman School, is an internationally prominent endocrinologist recognized for clinical expertise and groundbreaking research in diabetes. Well-known for his inspired teaching, Dr. Rubenstein has authored more than 350 publications and received numerous professional awards, including the highest honor of the Association of American Physicians, the George M. Kober Medal; the highest honor of the Association of Professors of Medicine, the Robert Williams Distinguished Chair of Medicine Award; and the Abraham Flexner Award for Distinguished Service to Medical Education from the Association of American Medical Colleges.

  • Sensation and Perception
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Learning and Memory
  • Specific interests: Human olfactory neuroscience; Odor codes, circuits, oscillations, and percepts

To explore Dr. Gottfried's work, visit the Gottfried Lab.

Recent Articles

"Brain regions linked to memory and emotion help humans navigate smell," Penn Today, April 22, 2019

  • BA (Molecular Biology), Princeton University
  • MD (Medicine), New York University
  • Ph.D. (Physiology/Neuroscience), New York University
Additional Penn Profiles

Gottfried Lab


Stellar-Chance Laboratories, 5th Floor
422 Curie Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: 215-573-8946