Frances A. Champagne is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at Columbia University and a Sackler Scientist with the Sackler Institute for Developmental Psychobiology at Columbia University. Champagne's doctoral and post-doctoral research was focused on the neurobiology of maternal care and the epigenetic effects of mother-infant interactions. Studies in rodents suggest that the quality of maternal care received in infancy can lead to long-term changes in offspring gene expression and behavior. Her current and ongoing research explores the implications of these influences for the transmission of behavior across generations and the molecular mechanisms through which these effects are achieved. The interplay between genes and the environment is critical during the process of development and exploring the role of epigenetic mechanisms in linking experiences with developmental outcomes is an evolving field of study. Champagne uses rodent models to study epigenetics, neurobiology, and behavior and also collaborates with clinical researchers who would like to apply the study of epigenetics to better understand origins of variation in human behavior. In addition to investigating the modulating effects of mother-infant interactions, Champagne is currently exploring a broad array of social influences and environmental exposures. In 2007, she received an NIH Director's New Innovator Award and is currently funded by the NIH, NIEHS, and EPA. Champagne also teaches a variety of undergraduate/graduate courses, including: "The Developing Brain", "Inheritance, and Neurobiology of Reproductive Behavior" and is currently a Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Psychology at Columbia University.
Champagne obtained her M.Sc. in Psychiatry and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience, followed by a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Cambridge, UK.