Gena L Glickman


Department of Primary Appointment:
School of Medicine
Director, Chronobiology, Light, and Sleep Lab
Location: Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD
Research Interests:
circadian rhythms, light, sleep
implementation science, development, neuropsychiatric disorders
Office Phone


PhD, Department of Psychology (Behavioral Neuroscience), University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California

MA, Department of Psychology, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California

BS, Department of Occupational Therapy, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

BA, Department of Psychology, Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania


Dr. Gena Glickman is a behavioral neuroscientist who studies the biological effects of light, with a particular interest in how natural cycles of light and darkness serve to regulate circadian rhythms, seasonal cycles, and neuroendocrine responses in mammals. Disruption of natural patterns can lead to a breakdown in normal homeostasis and in turn, compromise health, safety, and well being. Dr. Glickman's work has specific implications for further understanding alertness/performance, sleep disturbances, mood disorders, and certain hormone-sensitive cancers. Studies to date have examined the effects of different lighting characteristics (e.g. exposure parameters, prior light history) on circadian resetting, melatonin suppression, and the efficacy of therapeutic applications. By employing a variety of anatomical and behavioral techniques in humans and rodent models, her research has elucidated some of the neural mechanisms that mediate light in mammals. Ultimately, the aim is always to then also translate those basic research findings to more practical applications.

Career Highlights: Positions, Projects, Deployements, Awards and Additional Publications

- Schmied E, Harrison E, Powell A, Hurtado S, Glickman G (2022) Circadian, light and sleep skills program: efficacy of a brief educational intervention for improving sleep and psychological health at sea. Sleep Health, 8(5): 542-550 DOI:10.1016/j.sleh.2022.05.010

- Vetter C, Pattison M, Houser K, Herf M, Phillips A, Wright K, Skene D, Brainard G, Boivin D, Glickman G (2021) A review of human physiological responses to light: implications for the development of integrative lighting solutions. LEUKOS, DOI: 10.1080/15502724.2021.1872383

- Walbeek T, Harrison E, Gorman M, Glickman G (2021) Naturalistic intensities of light at night: A review of the potent effects of very dim light on circadian responses and considerations for translational research. Frontiers Neurology, DOI:10.3389/fneur.2021.625334

- Lee R and Glickman G (2021) Sleep, circadian health and melatonin for mitigating COVID-19 and optimizing vaccine efficacy. Frontiers Neuroscience, DOI: 10.3389/fnins.2021.711605

- Harrison E, Schmied E, Easterling A, Yablonsky A, Glickman G (2020) A hybrid effectiveness-implementation study of a multi-component lighting intervention for hospital shiftworkers. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17:9141, DOI:10.3390/ijerph17239141

- Harrison E, Schmied E, Glickman G (2020) Implementation of interventions designed to enhance the circadian health of shiftworkers. Chronobiology International 37: 573–591, DOI: 10.1080/07420528.2020.1845190

- Glickman G, Harrison E, Dobkins K (2017) Vaccination rates in younger siblings of children with autism. New England Journal of Medicine 377(11):1099-1101, DOI: 10.1056/NEJMc1708223

- Glickman G, Webb I, Elliott J, Rheale M, Baltazar R, Lehman M, Gorman M (2012) Photic sensitivity for circadian response to light varies with photoperiod. Journal of Biological Rhythms 27(4):308-318

- Glickman G (2010) Circadian rhythms and sleep in children with autism. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews 34(5):755 768, DOI: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2009.11.017

- Glickman G, Byrne B, Pineda C, Hauck W, Brainard G (2006) Light therapy for seasonal affective disorder with blue narrow-band light diodes. Biological Psychiatry 59:502-507, DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2005.07.006

Representative Bibliography

- Harrison E, Schmied E, Hurtado S, Powell A, Glickman G (2022) The development, implementation, and feasibility of a circadian, light, and sleep skills program for shipboard military personnel (CLASS-SM). International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(5):3093, DOI:10.3390/ijerph190530932

- Harrison E, Easterling A, Yablonsky A, Glickman G (2021) Sleep-scheduling strategies in hospital shiftworkers. Nature and Science of Sleep, 13: 1593-1609, DOI: 10.2147/NSS.S321960

- Harrison E, Easterling A, Schmied E, Hurtado S, Glickman G (2021) Chronotype and self-reported sleep, alertness and mental health in Sailors. Military Medical Research, 8:43, DOI: 10.1186/s40779-021-00335-2

- Vetter C, Philips A, Silva A, Lockley S, Glickman G (2019) Light me up? Why, when and how much light we need. Journal of Biological Rhythms, 34(6):573-575, DOI: 10.1177/0748730419892111

- Glickman G, Harrison E, Elliott J, Gorman M (2014) Increased photic sensitivity for phase resetting but not melatonin suppression in Siberian hamsters under short photoperiods. Hormones and Behavior 65(3):301-307, DOI: 10.1016/j.yhbeh.2014.01.002

- Brainard G, Sliney D, Hanifin J, Glickman G, Byrne B, Greeson J, Jasser S, Gerner E, Rollag M (2008) Sensitivity of the human circadian system to short wavelength (420 nm) light. Journal of Biological Rhythms 23(5):379-386, DOI: 10.1177/0748730408323089

- Brainard G and Glickman G (2004) The biological potency of light in humans: significance to health and behavior. Light & Engineering 12(1):5-16

- Glickman G, Hanifin J, Rollag M, Wang J, Cooper H, Brainard G (2003) Inferior retinal light exposure is more effective than superior retinal exposure in suppressing melatonin in humans. Journal of Biological Rhythms 18(1):71- 79, DOI: 10.1177/0748730402239678

- Glickman G, Levin R, Brainard G (2022) Ocular input for human melatonin regulation: relevance to breast cancer. Neuroendocrinology Letters 23(2):17-22, PMID: 12163843

- Brainard G, Hanifin J, Greeson J, Byrne B, Glickman G, Gerner E, Rollag M (2001) Action spectrum for melatonin regulation in humans: evidence for a novel circadian photoreceptor. Journal of Neuroscience 21(16):6405-6412, DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.21-16-06405.2001