James A Naifeh


Department of Primary Appointment:
School of Medicine
Location: Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD
Research Interests:


James A. Naifeh, PhD, is a Research Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Uniformed Services University and a Research Psychologist at the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress. Following an undergraduate education at the University of Colorado, Dr. Naifeh received his PhD from the University of South Dakota, where he completed the Doctoral Specialty Track in Clinical/Disaster Psychology and served as a Morgan Fellow in the Disaster Mental Health Institute. He completed his clinical internship with the VA Maryland Health Care System and a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. Trained in psychological assessment and cognitive-behavioral interventions, he has worked clinically with military veterans and civilians in a variety of outpatient and residential treatment facilities.

Dr. Naifeh’s research aims to advance our understanding of mental health risk and resilience in military personnel through the identification of psychological, environmental, and neurobiological factors associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), suicide, and other adverse health outcomes. He has authored numerous peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and has served as an investigator on research projects funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, Department of Defense, and Department of the Army. Included among these is the Army Study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Servicemembers (Army STARRS), the largest epidemiological and neurobiological study of risk and resilience ever conducted in the U.S. military.


Naifeh, J. A., Ursano, R. J., Benfer, N., Wu, H., Herman, M., Benedek, D. M., Russell, D. W., Benevides, K. N., Kao, T.-C., Ng, T. H. H., Aliaga, P. A., Wynn, G. H., Zhang, L., Forsten, R. D., & Fullerton, C. S. (2017). PTSD symptom severity and sensitivity to blood, injury, and mutilation in U.S. Army special operations soldiers. Psychiatry Research, 250, 78-83.

Naifeh, J. A., Nock, M. K., Ursano, R. J., Vegella, P. L., Aliaga, P. A., Fullerton, C. S., Kessler, R. C., Wryter, C. L., Heeringa, S. G., & Stein, M. B. (2017). Neurocognitive function and suicide in U.S. Army soldiers. Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, 47(5), 589-602.

Ursano, R. J., Kessler, R. C., Naifeh, J. A., Herberman Mash, H. B., Fullerton, C. S., Ng, T. H. H., Aliaga, P. A., Wynn, G. H., Dinh, H. M., McCarroll, J. E., Sampson, N. A., Kao, T.-C., Schoenbaum, M., Heeringa, S. G., & Stein, M. B. (2017). Suicide attempts in U.S. Army combat arms, special forces and combat medics. BMC Psychiatry, 17, 194.

Naifeh, J. A., Colpe, L. J., Aliaga, P. A., Sampson, N. A., Heeringa, S. G., Stein, M. B., Ursano, R. J., Fullerton, C. S., Nock, M. K., Schoenbaum, M., Zaslavsky, A. M., & Kessler, R. C. (2016). Barriers to initiating and continuing mental health treatment among soldiers in the Army Study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Servicemembers (Army STARRS). Military Medicine, 181(9), 1021-1032.

Kessler, R. C., Warner, C. H., Ivany, C., Petukhova, M. V., Rose, S., Bromet, E. J., Brown III, M., Cai, T., Colpe, L. J., Cox, K. L., Fullerton, C. S., Gilman, S. E., Gruber, M. J., Heeringa, S. G., Lewandowski-Romps, L., Li, J., Millikan-Bell, A. M., Naifeh, J. A., Nock, M. K., Rosellini, A. J., Sampson, N. A., Schoenbaum, M., Stein, M. B., Wessely, S., Zaslavsky, A. M., & Ursano, R. J. (2015). Predicting suicides after psychiatric hospitalization in US Army soldiers: The Army Study to Assess Risk and

Ursano, R. J., Kessler, R. C., Stein, M. B., Naifeh, J. A., Aliaga, P. A., Fullerton, C. S., Wynn, G. H., Vegella, P. L., Ng, T. H. H., Zhang, B. G., Wryter, C. L., Sampson, N. A., Kao, T.-C., Colpe, L. J., Schoenbaum, M., McCarroll, J. E., Cox, K. L., & Heeringa, S. G. (2016). Risk factors, methods, and timing of suicide attempts among U.S. Army soldiers. JAMA Psychiatry, 73(7), 741-749.

Naifeh, J. A., Tull, M. T., & Gratz, K. L. (2012). Anxiety sensitivity, emotional avoidance, and PTSD symptom severity among crack/cocaine dependent patients in residential treatment. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 36, 247-257.

Naifeh, J. A., Richardson, J. D., Del Ben, K. S., & Elhai, J. D. (2010). Heterogeneity in the latent structure of PTSD symptoms among Canadian veterans. Psychological Assessment, 22, 666-674.

Naifeh, J. A., & Elhai, J. D. (2010). An experimental comparison of index traumatic event queries in PTSD assessment. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 24, 155-160.

Naifeh, J. A., Elhai, J. D., Kashdan, T. B., & Grubaugh, A. L. (2008). The PTSD Symptom Scale’s latent structure: An examination of trauma-exposed medical patients. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 22, 1355-1368.