Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Menu Search

Trinity College Dublin By using this website you consent to the use of cookies in accordance with the Trinity cookie policy. For more information on cookies see our cookie policy.

Profile Photo

Dr. Kevin Mitchell

Assoc Prof in Developmental Neurobiolo (Genetics)

Assoc Prof in Developmental Neurobiolo (Trinity Inst. of Neurosciences (TCIN))

Kevin Mitchell is a graduate of the Genetics Department, Trinity College Dublin (B.A., Mod. 1991) and received his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley (1997), where he studied nervous system development with Prof. Corey Goodman. He did postdoctoral research with Prof. Marc Tessier-Lavigne at Stanford University, using molecular genetics to study neural development in the mouse. Since 2002 he has been on the faculty at Trinity College Dublin as a Science Foundation Ireland Investigator and now as Associate Professor in Genetics and Neuroscience. He was an EMBO Young Investigator and was elected to Fellowship of Trinity College in 2009. He served as Associate Director of Undergraduate Science Education at Trinity College Dublin from 2016-18 and led a re-imagining of the TCD science courses. Since 2018, he has been Senior Lecturer/Dean of Undergraduate Studies and has been leading efforts to create a systematic Common Architecture with the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences under the Trinity Education Project. This aims to rationalise curricular approaches under a common system with a fixed timetable, introduce greater flexibility and breadth while maintaining a strong programmatic focus, and facilitate effective innovation in delivery and assessment methods. His research interests are in understanding the genetic program specifying the wiring of the brain and its relevance to variation in human faculties, especially to psychiatric and neurological disease. He is particularly interested in schizophrenia, and autism and variation in perception, including synaesthesia. His group has discovered numerous genes involved in specifying neuronal connectivity in the developing brain and shown that mutations in such genes in mice can lead to neurological and behavioural symptoms, modelling aspects of epilepsy, psychosis and ADHD. His cross-disciplinary work on synaesthesia has helped shape the understanding of the genetic, developmental and neural basis of this unique perceptual condition. He is also a leading scholar in the genetics of neurodevelopmental disorders, having made numerous theoretical contributions and recently edited a book on the subject. The over-arching goal of his work is to help develop and promote a coherent conceptual framework in which to integrate findings from diverse fields, particularly genetics, developmental biology and neuroscience. This strategy is manifested in his cross-disciplinary experimental research and scholarship, as described above, and also in his teaching, conference organising, blogging, editing and other writing. He has developed multiple courses in the emerging, integrative field of Neurogenetics, delivered to undergraduates in both Genetics and Neuroscience at TCD. He was the lead organiser of the inter-disciplinary and international Wiring the Brain conference, held in 2009 and 2011 in Ireland and in 2013, 2015, and 2017 at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York. He is an active communicator on Twitter (@WiringtheBrain) and writes a popular blog on the intersection of genetics, development, neuroscience, psychology and psychiatry ( He also regularly gives public lectures and media interviews on diverse topics, with the goal of promoting public understanding of neuroscience and genetics. His 2018 book "Innate; How the Wiring of Our Brains Shapes Who We Are", published by Princeton University Press, develops an integrative conceptual framework in which to consider the origins of variation in human faculties, through a novel synthesis of findings from behavioural genetics, developmental neurobiology, neuroscience and psychology.
 Variation in the frame rate of visual perception: testing at the margins of human ability
 Science Foundation Ireland Investigator Grant
 Science Foundation Ireland Investigator Grant
 Health Research Board Project Grant
 Science Foundation Ireland Research Frontiers Grant

Page 1 of 3
Mitchell, K.J., Developmental noise is an overlooked contributor to innate variation in psychological traits, Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 45, (e171), 2022, Notes: [cited By 0], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Potter, H.D. and Mitchell, K.J., Naturalising Agent Causation, Entropy, 24, (4), 2022, Notes: [cited By 1], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
McGarry, N. and Murray, C.L. and Garvey, S. and Wilkinson, A. and Tortorelli, L. and Ryan, L. and Hayden, L. and Healy, D. and Griffin, E.W. and Hennessy, E. and Arumugam, M. and Skelly, D.T. and Mitchell, K.J. and Cunningham, C., Double stranded RNA drives anti-viral innate immune responses, sickness behavior and cognitive dysfunction dependent on dsRNA length, IFNAR1 expression and age, Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 95, 2021, p413-428 , Notes: [cited By 4], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Myers, S.M., Challman, T.D., Bernier, R., Bourgeron, T., Chung, W.K., Constantino, J.N., Eichler, E.E., Jacquemont, S., Miller, D.T., Mitchell, K.J., Zoghbi, H.Y., Martin, C.L., and Ledbetter, D.H., Insufficient Evidence for "Autism-Specific" Genes, American Journal of Human Genetics, 106, (5), 2020, p587 - 595, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI  URL
Rammos, A. and Gonzalez, L.A.N. and Weinberger, D.R. and Mitchell, K.J. and Nicodemus, K.K., The role of polygenic risk score gene-set analysis in the context of the omnigenic model of schizophrenia, Neuropsychopharmacology, 44, (9), 2019, p1562-1569 , Notes: [cited By 0], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Rogers, M. and Boland, B. and Clarke, S. and Craven, A. and Fassbender, C. and Gill, M. and Hardiman, O. and Henshall, D.C. and Lynch, T. and Mitchell, K. and Pender, N. and Rogan, C. and Roche, R.A.P., Building a supportive framework for brain research in Ireland: Inaugural position paper of the Irish Brain Council, European Journal of Neuroscience, 49, (11), 2019, p1362-1370 , Notes: [cited By 0], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Okada, T. and Keino-Masu, K. and Suto, F. and Mitchell, K.J. and Masu, M., Remarkable complexity and variability of corticospinal tract defects in adult Semaphorin 6A knockout mice, Brain Research, 1710, 2019, p209-219 , Notes: [cited By 1], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Okada, T. and Keino-Masu, K. and Suto, F. and Mitchell, K.J. and Masu, M., Data for 3D reconstruction of the corticospinal tract in the wild-type and Semaphorin 6A knockout adult brain, Data in Brief, 23, (103718), 2019, Notes: [cited By 1], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Kevin J. Mitchell, Innate - How the Wiring of Our Brains Shapes Who We Are, Princeton University Press, 2018, Book, PUBLISHED  URL
Mitchell, K.J., Neurogenomics â€" towards a more rigorous science, European Journal of Neuroscience, 47, (2), 2018, p109-114 , Notes: [cited By 0], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI

Page 1 of 9
Finucane C, Corvin A, Newell FN, Mitchell KJ, Synaesthesia in the Irish population: Phenotypic characteristics and familiality, AMERICAN JOURNAL OF MEDICAL GENETICS PART B-NEUROPSYCHIATRIC GENETICS, SEP 15, 130B, (1), 2004, pp60 - 60, Meeting Abstract, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., World Congress of Psychiatric Genetics, 2004, -, Notes: [On the local organising committee for the World Congress of Psychiatric Genetics, Trinity College Dublin, 2004], Miscellaneous, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., Genetics Department, Cambridge University, January, 2003, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., At symposium 'Wiring the Brain', Edinburgh University , April , 2003, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., Department of Anatomy and Human Genetics , Oxford University , May, 2003, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., Symposium on Genomics and Proteomics, University College Dublin , June, 2003, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., Biology Society seminar series, National University of Ireland, Maynooth, Nov, 2003, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology, King"s College, London, July , 2002, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J., Zoology Department, Trinity College Dublin, Oct. , 2002, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED
Mitchell, K.J, Dublin Molecular Medicine Centre, St. James"s Hospital, Dublin , Nov. , 2002, Invited Talk, PUBLISHED


Award Date
Summer Scholarship from the American Ireland Fund 1990
National Science Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship 1992 - 1995
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Postdoctoral Fellowship 1998
Jane Coffin Childs Fund for Medical Research Postdoctoral Fellowship 1998 - 2001
Wellcome Trust grant to fund the international conference 'Life and Death of the Brain' held in Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. 1999
Science Foundation Ireland Investigator Grant (€1,690,000/ five years 2002-2007
2003-2005 Health Research Board Programme Grant (€164,000/ three years) 2003 - 2005
EMBO Young Investigator Programme Award 2004
Election to Fellowship, Trinity College Dublin 2009
Appointed as Affiliate Member, MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology, King's College London 2010