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Professor Marcus Munafo

Professor Marcus Munafo

Professor Marcus Munafo
MA(Oxon), MSc, PhD(Soton)

Professor of Biological Psychology

Area of research

Genetic and cognitive influences on addictive behaviour

Office 5D03
The Priory Road Complex,
Priory Road, Clifton BS8 1TU
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 954 6841


My research focuses on the neurobiological and genetic basis for tobacco and alcohol use, including smoking cessation, with two themes: the laboratory study of neurobiological pathways involved in substance use, and the large-scale longitudinal study of genetic influences on substance use and treatment response. Recently, my research has focused on the relationship between health behaviours and both physical and mental health outcomes, using instrumental variables (e.g., Mendelian randomization) and negative control methods to elucidate the causal nature of these relationships. I am also developing programmes of work investigating the role of emotion perception biases in mental health (and the therapeutic potential of modification of these biases), and the potential of choice architecture interventions to shape lifestyle behaviours (e.g., tobacco and alcohol use) and promote public health.


  • Professor of Biological Psychology, School of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol (2010-present)
  • Reader in Biological Psychology, Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol (2007-2010)
  • Lecturer, Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol (2005-2007)
  • Visiting Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania (2004-2005)
  • Research Fellow, Department of Clinical Pharmacology, University of Oxford (1999-2005)

Video of Professor Marcus Munafo.


Experimental Psychology B.Sc.

  • Individual Differences, Year 2


  • Transport Research Laboratory
  • Servier Ltd
  • World Health Organisation

Current PhD students

  • Olivia Maynard: "Visual Search and Tobacco Packaging"
  • Jennifer Ware: "Molecular Genetics of Nicotine Addiction" (University of Cardiff)
  • Michael Anderson: "Translational Model of Depression"
  • Kate Button: "Cognitive Processes in Social Anxiety"
  • Suzi Gage: "Cannabis Use and Psychosis"


  • Addiction
  • Nicotine
  • Alcohol


Current research is in the area of the genetic determinants of addictive behaviours, in particular alcohol and nicotine use, and in the role of human personality in explaining the association between genetic variation and addictive behaviours.

  • addiction
  • nicotine
  • alcohol
  • genetics
  • Selected publications

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    Recent publications

    View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

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