Mary Sula Bishop Center for Translational Neuroscience

Mary "Sula" Bishop

Meet Our Muse

Mary Sula Wansley Bishop (MSB) was born in Decatur, Mississippi in 1929 and continues to live there independently as of this writing. She married Charles Bishop and had two children. MSB has had a life-long passion for chemistry. She became a medical technologist and had a fulfilling career and a happy young family—until she became afflicted with a severe bout of depression and crippling anxiety that would wax and wane for the next two decades or so. In addition, she had debilitating migraine headaches that had a similar duration.  Today MSB is free of migraine headaches and mostly free of anxiety and depression.  During her darkest periods MSB was convinced that there was a biological basis of her depression that just needed to be recognized and treated. Since the depression had its initial onset in the postpartum period and remitted during her subsequent pregnancy only to reappear in the second postpartum period, MSB naturally attributed her depression to some hormonal derangement (perhaps recent drug development has in part vindicated this belief). This was during a time when psychoanalytic theory was the primary explanation of mental disorders.

For being a contrarian, insightful far ahead of her time, and having a chemically informed worldview, I am eternally grateful.  With this same spirit we at MSB dedicate ourselves to carrying on the work that MSB inspired.