John W. Denninger, MD, PhD

John W. Denninger, MD, PhD

Instructor, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
John W. Denninger, MD, PhD


John Denninger, MD, PhD, is Director of Research at the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital. He also serves as Associate Director of the MGH-McLean Adult Psychiatry Residency Training Program and Instructor Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. After receiving his undergraduate degree from Harvard University, Dr. Denninger completed his MD/PhD—with dissertation work on the biochemistry of the nitric oxide receptor—at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He completed his internship and residency in the MGH/McLean Adult Psychiatry Residency Training Program and served as Chief Resident in Psychopharmacology at Massachusetts General Hospital. He has received a Master of Medical Sciences from the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology as part of the Clinical Investigator Training Program. Dr. Denninger has received many awards for his research and teaching, including the NCDEU New Investigators Award and the Harvard Medical School Students Award for Teaching. Dr. Denninger’s work overseeing the Benson-Henry Institute’s research program explores the relationship between stress reduction, resiliency enhancement and health in both clinical and basic domains. His research focuses on answering two questions about mind-body medicine interventions: (1) Assessing how well these interventions can help to promote wellness in a broad range of people and (2) determining how these interventions work, by exploring details of mechanism from genes, to biochemistry, to physiology, to brain activity.