Sarosh Motivala, Ph.D.


Health Sciences Clinical Assistant Professor, Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences

Contact Information

Work Phone Number: (310) 206-7492

Mailing Address:

300 UCLA Medical Plaza
Suite 3108
Mail Code 707624
Los Angeles, CA 90095


Sarosh J. Motivala, Ph.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist and is a cognitive-behavioral therapist specializing in research-supported treatment of OCD. At the UCLA OCD Treatment Program he oversees graduate student training, conducts research and see patients. In addition to his focus on helping individuals with chronic anxiety. He received his undergraduate degree from UCLA and his doctorate in health-clinical psychology from the University of Miami. Subsequently, he returned to Los Angeles and UCLA as a postdoctoral fellow and then faculty member at the UCLA Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, where he used and evaluated research-supported psychological treatment approaches in working with patients with anxiety disorders and sleep disorders. Dr. Motivala has over 40 peer reviewed scientific journal articles, book chapters and conference presentations examining interactions between mood, stress, physiological outcomes and health. In addition to his work at the UCLA OCD program, Dr. Motivala sees clients through Spectrum CBT, an outpatient program specializing in treating anxiety disorders and OCD. Dr. Motivala’s research is currently focused on examining the interplay of stress and poor sleep on mood and functioning in OCD.


A selected list of publications:

Irwin Michael R, Olmstead Richard, Carrillo Carmen, Sadeghi Nina, Breen Elizabeth C, Witarama Tuff, Yokomizo Megumi, Lavretsky Helen, Carroll Judith E, Motivala Sarosh J, Bootzin Richard, Nicassio Perry   Cognitive behavioral therapy vs. Tai Chi for late life insomnia and inflammatory risk: a randomized controlled comparative efficacy trial Sleep, 2014; 37(9): 1543-52.
Black David S, Irwin Michael R, Olmstead Richard, Ji Ellen, Crabb Breen Elizabeth, Motivala Sarosh J   Tai chi meditation effects on nuclear factor-κB signaling in lonely older adults: a randomized controlled trial Psychotherapy and psychosomatics, 2014; 83(5): 315-7.
Rose Raphael D, Buckey Jay C, Zbozinek Tomislav D, Motivala Sarosh J, Glenn Daniel E, Cartreine James A, Craske Michelle G   A randomized controlled trial of a self-guided, multimedia, stress management and resilience training program Behaviour research and therapy, 2013; 51(2): 106-12.
Thombs Brett D, Jewett Lisa R, Assassi Shervin, Baron Murray, Bartlett Susan J, Maia Angela Costa, El-Baalbaki Ghassan, Furst Daniel E, Gottesman Karen, Haythornthwaite Jennifer A, Hudson Marie, Impens Ann, Korner Annett, Leite Catarina, Mayes Maureen D, Malcarne Vanessa L, Motivala Sarosh J, Mouthon Luc, Nielson Warren R, Plante Diane, Poiraudeau Serge, Poole Janet L, Pope Janet, Sauve Maureen, Steele Russell J, Suarez-Almazor Maria E, Taillefer Suzanne, van den Ende Cornelia H, Arthurs Erin, Bassel Marielle, Delisle Vanessa, Milette Katherine, Leavens Allison, Razykov Ilya, Khanna Dinesh   New directions for patient-centred care in scleroderma: the Scleroderma Patient-centred Intervention Network (SPIN) Clinical and experimental rheumatology, 2013; 30(2 Suppl 71): S23-9.
Motivala Sarosh J   Sleep and inflammation: psychoneuroimmunology in the context of cardiovascular disease Annals of behavioral medicine : a publication of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, 2011; 42(2): 141-52.
Milette Katherine, Razykov Ilya, Pope Janet, Hudson Marie, Motivala Sarosh J, Baron Murray, Thombs Brett D   Clinical correlates of sleep problems in systemic sclerosis: the prominent role of pain Rheumatology (Oxford, England), 2011; 50(5): 921-5.
Frosch Dominick L, Saxbe Darby, Tomiyama A Janet, Glenn Beth A, Low Carissa A, Hanoch Yaniv, Motivala Sarosh J, Meeker Daniella   Assessing the scholarly impact of health psychology: a citation analysis of articles published from 1993 to 2003 Health psychology : official journal of the Division of Health Psychology, American Psychological Association, 2010; 29(5): 555-62.
Thombs Brett D, van Lankveld Wim, Bassel Marielle, Baron Murray, Buzza Robert, Haslam Shirley, Haythornthwaite Jennifer A, Hudson Marie, Jewett Lisa R, Knafo Ruby, Kwakkenbos Linda, Malcarne Vanessa L, Milette Katherine, Motivala Sarosh J, Newton Evan G, Nielson Warren R, Pacy Marion, Razykov Ilya, Schieir Orit, Taillefer Suzanne, Worron-Sauve Maureen   Psychological health and well-being in systemic sclerosis: State of the science and consensus research agenda Arthritis care & research, 2010; 62(8): 1181-9.
Motivala Sarosh J, Tomiyama A Janet, Ziegler Michael, Khandrika Srikrishna, Irwin Michael R   Nocturnal levels of ghrelin and leptin and sleep in chronic insomnia Psychoneuroendocrinology, 2009; 34(4): 540-5.
Irwin Michael R, Olmstead Richard, Motivala Sarosh J   Improving sleep quality in older adults with moderate sleep complaints: A randomized controlled trial of Tai Chi Chih Sleep, 2008; 31(7): 1001-8.
Valladares Edwin M, Eljammal Sam M, Motivala Sarosh, Ehlers Cindy L, Irwin Michael R   Sex differences in cardiac sympathovagal balance and vagal tone during nocturnal sleep Sleep medicine, 2008; 9(3): 310-6.
Motivala Sarosh J, Khanna Dinesh, FitzGerald John, Irwin Michael R   Stress activation of cellular markers of inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis: protective effects of tumor necrosis factor alpha antagonists Arthritis and rheumatism, 2008; 58(2): 376-83.
Davis Mary C, Zautra Alex J, Younger Jarred, Motivala Sarosh J, Attrep Jeanne, Irwin Michael R   Chronic stress and regulation of cellular markers of inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis: implications for fatigue Brain, behavior, and immunity, 2008; 22(1): 24-32.
O'Connor Mary-Frances, Motivala Sarosh J, Valladares Edwin M, Olmstead Richard, Irwin Michael R   Sex differences in monocyte expression of IL-6: role of autonomic mechanisms American journal of physiology. Regulatory, integrative and comparative physiology, 2007; 293(1): R145-51.
Irwin Michael R, Olmos Luis, Wang Minge, Valladares Edwin M, Motivala Sarosh J, Fong Tim, Newton Tom, Butch Anthony, Olmstead Richard, Cole Steve W   Cocaine dependence and acute cocaine induce decreases of monocyte proinflammatory cytokine expression across the diurnal period: autonomic mechanisms The Journal of pharmacology and experimental therapeutics, 2007; 320(2): 507-15.
Motivala Sarosh J, Sollers John, Thayer Julian, Irwin Michael R   Tai Chi Chih acutely decreases sympathetic nervous system activity in older adults The journals of gerontology. Series A, Biological sciences and medical sciences, 2006; 61(11): 1177-80.
Cole Jason C, Khanna Dinesh, Clements Philip J, Seibold James R, Tashkin Donald P, Paulus Harold E, Irwin Michael R, Motivala Sarosh J, Furst Daniel E   Single-factor scoring validation for the Health Assessment Questionnaire-Disability Index (HAQ-DI) in patients with systemic sclerosis and comparison with early rheumatoid arthritis patients Quality of life research : an international journal of quality of life aspects of treatment, care and rehabilitation, 2006; 15(8): 1383-94.
Irwin Michael R, Valladares Edwin M, Motivala Sarosh, Thayer Julian F, Ehlers Cindy L   Association between nocturnal vagal tone and sleep depth, sleep quality, and fatigue in alcohol dependence Psychosomatic medicine, 2006; 68(1): 159-66.
Motivala Sarosh J, Levin Myron J, Oxman Michael N, Irwin Michael R   Impairments in health functioning and sleep quality in older adults with a history of depression Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 2006; 54(8): 1184-91.
Hurwitz Barry E, Brownley Kimberly A, Motivala Sarosh J, Milanovich John R, Kibler Jeffrey L, Fillion Lise, LeBlanc William G, Kumar Mahendra, Klimas Nancy G, Fletcher Mary Ann, Schneiderman Neil   Sympathoimmune anomalies underlying the response to stressful challenge in human immunodeficiency virus spectrum disease Psychosomatic medicine, 2006; 67(5): 798-806.
Cole Jason C, Motivala Sarosh J, Buysse Daniel J, Oxman Michael N, Levin Myron J, Irwin Michael R   Validation of a 3-factor scoring model for the Pittsburgh sleep quality index in older adults Sleep, 2006; 29(1): 112-6.
Motivala Sarosh J, Sarfatti Avishay, Olmos Luis, Irwin Michael R   Inflammatory markers and sleep disturbance in major depression Psychosomatic medicine, 2005; 67(2): 187-94.
Cole Jason C, Motivala Sarosh J, Khanna Dinesh, Lee Jessica Y, Paulus Harold E, Irwin Michael R   Validation of single-factor structure and scoring protocol for the Health Assessment Questionnaire-Disability Index Arthritis and rheumatism, 2005; 53(4): 536-42.
Irwin Michael, Rinetti Gina, Redwine Laura, Motivala Sarosh, Dang Jeff, Ehlers Cindy   Nocturnal proinflammatory cytokine-associated sleep disturbances in abstinent African American alcoholics Brain, behavior, and immunity, 2004; 18(4): 349-60.
Motivala Sarosh J, Dang Jeff, Obradovic Tanja, Meadows Gary G, Butch Anthony W, Irwin Michael R   Leptin and cellular and innate immunity in abstinent alcoholics and controls Alcoholism, clinical and experimental research, 2003; 27(11): 1819-24.
Motivala Sarosh J, Hurwitz Barry E, Llabre Maria M, Klimas Nancy G, Fletcher Mary Ann, Antoni Michael H, LeBlanc William G, Schneiderman Neil   Psychological distress is associated with decreased memory helper T-cell and B-cell counts in pre-AIDS HIV seropositive men and women but only in those with low viral load Psychosomatic medicine, 2003; 65(4): 627-35.