Projects

Brain Resilience After Trauma Exposure

There is strong evidence that maltreatment during childhood results in differences across multiple circuits in the developing brain. The extent that affected circuits are involved in psychopathology, however, is unclear. Determining which circuits are involved is necessary to develop interventions that target specific neurobiological systems. We will determine these circuits using machine learning. Machine learning is a set of computer-based learning methods in which meaningful theoretical models are derived from empirical data. This project is funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (PI: Matt Price)

Mindfulness to recover from trauma

More than 3 in 4 adults will be exposed to a potentially traumatic event in their lifetime, and approximately 1 in 4 of those adults will develop chronic psychopathology such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) within a year of trauma exposure. Elevated arousal in response to trauma cues after experiencing a potentially traumatic event is normal, and declines within a month of exposure among those who do not develop PTSD. Mindfulness meditation is an evidence-based meditation strategy effective for treating PTSD symptoms by targeting arousal in response to trauma cues. Thus, by delivering mindfulness meditation to trauma exposed individuals its efficacy at reducing arousal to threat cues shortly after exposure to a potentially traumatic event can be assessed. This project is funded by UVM. (PI: Matt Price)