Lilla Porffy

Pathway NPIF 0+3.5

Cohort 2017

0+3.5 iCASE Student

I earned a BSc degree in Psychology at London South Bank University, and an MSc degree in Psychiatric Research at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King’s College London. After graduation, I held various research posts which has helped me to decide that I wanted to do a PhD. Having studied and worked at King’s previously, it seemed like an evident choice to  apply for the MRC DTP 0+3.5 programme there. Nonetheless, I feel privileged that I was accepted onto the Advanced Therapeutics, Health Informatics & Digital Technologies Programme to work in collaboration with our industry partners. This has given me the opportunity to enhance my intellectual and technical skills, while also learning about setting up and executing projects with external collaborators.

PhD Project

My PhD project aims to explore novel ways in which cognitive functioning can be assessed and improved in patients with psychosis. I’m going to be testing a virtual-reality cognitive task, which has been designed between our lab and industry collaborator, Vitae VR . In addition, we will test whether game-based cognitive tasks can be used to improve cognition in this patient group.

Research Experience

2017: Research Worker – EU-GEI Project – King’s College London
2017: Research Worker – Cognition, Schizophrenia and Imaging Lab – King’s College London
2016/17: Research Psychologist – Ketamine for Reduction of Alcoholic Relapse – University College London
2016/17: Research Worker – MSc Psychiatric Research Programme – King’s College London
2015: Honorary Research Worker – Electronic Cigarettes in Smokers With Mental Illness – King’s College London


Lawn W., Hallak J. E., Crippa J. A., dos Santos R., Porffy L., Barratt M. J., Ferris J. A., Winstock A. R., & Morgan C. (2017). Well-being, problematic alcohol consumption and acute subjective drug effects in ayahuasca users: a large, international, online survey. Scientific Reports, 7(1), 15201.

Lowe P., Kriovy A., Porffy L., Henriksdottir E., Eromona W., & Shergill S. (2017). When the drugs don’t work – treatment resistant schizophrenia, serotonin and serendipity. Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology.

McAndrew A., Lawn W., Stevens T., Porffy L., Brandner B., & Morgan C. J. A. (2017). A proof-of-concept investigation into ketamine as a pharmacological treatment for alcohol dependence: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial. Trials, 18(1), 159.

Public Engagement

Beth Marsh, Lilla Porffy, Meryem Grabski, and Will Lawn (2018) Could ketamine help treat alcohol dependence? The Guardian

Other Achievements

I presented a research poster at the 6th Biennial Schizophrenia International Research Society Conference 2018 titled “Oxytocin Enhances Visual Attention in Patients with Schizophrenia:

Evidence from an eye-tracking study” (Porffy L., Wigton R., Coutrot A., Joyce D., Mareschal I., Shergill S. S.). I was awarded the Guarantors of Brain Travel Grant to attend the conference.


Professor Sukhi Shergill

Professor Mitul Mehta