News

NIH Funding for Neuropsychology and Neuroscience Research Awarded!

https://www.paloaltou.edu/news-faculty-spotlight/dr-stacie-warren-garners-nih-funding-neuropsychology-and-neuroscience?mc_cid=cbb1026b68&mc_eid=caa0bcd4bf


Professor Stacie Warren, PhD, is co-investigator on several National Institutes of Health research projects that bring innovative grant funding to PAU and provide students with unique learning opportunities. 
 
The three grants are titled:

  • Integrative Computational Models of Latent Behavioral and Neural Constructs in Children: A Longitudinal Developmental Big-Data Approach 

  • An Integrative Framework of Cognitive Control and Reward Modulation in Children with ADHD: from Brain Dynamics to Clinical Symptoms

  • Interventions in Math Learning Disabilities: Cognitive and Neural Correlates

Dr. Warren said, “A unifying theme for these grants is that most psychiatric disorders have a neurodevelopmental origin, but we don’t have a good understanding of how brain systems become compromised in the development and course of psychopathology. That leaves a gaping hole in our prevention and intervention efforts.” 
 
She said the three grants will help researchers develop new targets for early intervention and prevention, such as neural circuits. 
 
For example, the first two grants will focus on cognitive control and the processes that help us make decisions and regulate emotions. Warren explained that “impairments in cognitive control are fundamental to every form of psychopathology. These grant projects are creating new methodological approaches to understanding the components of cognitive control, how to measure cognitive control more effectively, and mapping these elements to the brain.”
 
The second grant uses “novel cognitive, neuroscience and computational models." Traditional statistical approaches may not be sufficient for describing the mechanisms of psychopathology and Dr. Warren states that “the computational grant, and the others, really push the scientific envelope to advance our science of psychology. I am excited to be a part of these projects, and I am grateful to work with such an exceptional, first-rate team at Stanford.”
 
For the second and third grants, PAU students are being trained to provide pediatric neuropsychological assessments. “Historically, PAU students who wanted to specialize in pediatric neuropsychology did not have a lot of practicum options available to them,” said Dr. Warren. “So, I created a pediatric neuropsychological assessment practicum in conjunction with my work at Stanford University.” 
 
These are compensated research opportunities for PAU students, which is rare in the field, and the hours also count toward internship applications, she explained.
 
Dr. Warren’s work has focused on adults 18-55 years old, but she describes herself as a ‘lifespan neuropsychologist.’  “I get to study emotion regulation, executive function, and the development of psychopathology in kids. This is a natural progression of my program of research, because, as it turns out, to understand the developmental trajectories of psychopathology, you’ve got to start with children!”
 
In the future, her work may incorporate older adults. “It is important to study developmental contexts,” said Dr. Warren. “It is important to study developmental contexts,” said Dr. Warren, “because the interventions and preventative measures we develop for children, adults, and older adults might look different. As medicine is becoming more personalized, our therapy needs to become more personalized.” 

Article Featured in Stanford Medicine!

An article in Biological Psychiatry, with shared lead authorship by Dr. Warren was featured on the Stanford Medicine news page. The study examined the role of the amygdala and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in reactivity to anxiety and stress in children.

https://med.stanford.edu/news/all-news/2020/04/stanford-study-finds-stronger-one-way-fear-signals-in-brains-of-.html

Recent Article Publications:

Cai, W., Warren, S. L., Duberg, K., Pennington, B., Hinshaw, S., & Menon, V. (In press). Latent brain state dynamics distinguish behavioral variability, impaired decision-making, and inattention. Molecular Psychiatry.

Liu, K., Nijmeh, J. S., & Warren, S. L. (2021). Factor structure, measurement invariance, and concurrent validity of the Penn State Worry Questionnaire across development, psychopathology, and culture. Assessment. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1177/107319112199322

 

Warren, S. L., Heller, W., & Miller, G. A. (2021). The structure of executive dysfunction in depression and anxiety. Journal of Affective Disorders, 279, 208-216. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2020.09.132

 

Warren, S. L., Zhang, Y., Duberg, K., Mistry, P., Cai, W., Quin, S., Bostan, S. N., Padmanabhan, A., Carrion, V. G., & Menon, V. (2020). Anxiety and stress alter decision-making dynamics and causal amygdala-dorsolateral prefrontal cortex interactions during emotion regulation in children. Biological Psychiatry, 88(7), 576-586. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsych.2020.02.011

Congratulations to our current and former lab members for their accomplishments listed below!

  • Layven Reguero, Joseph Nijmeh, Laura Fry, and Hannah Saltzman have successfully matched to Predoctoral Internships.

  • Layven will be training at Allina Health outside Minneapolis, MN

  • Joseph will be training at Malcolm Grow Medical Clinic & Surgery Center at Andrews AF Base

  • Laura will be training at UCLA Adult Neuropsychology Track

  • Hannah will be training at  Heritage Clinic in Pasadena 

  • Whitney Geller and Justin Davich successfully defended their dissertations!

  • ​Jackie Kantor successfully defended her dissertation this year!

  • Jackie is training at Denver Health for Predoctoral Internship

  • Laura is training at Memphis VA for Predoctoral Internship

  • Whitney is be training at Boise VA for Predoctoral Internship

PAU Students Awarded Prestigious Placement at Michigan Training Course

Trisha Karsten and Laura Gramling in August 2018

Whitney Geller and Jerry Chen in August 2016

The course is known to be among the most competitive in the country of its type and is a fully-funded NIH training course.

Now four of PAU’s students have been accepted into the University of Michigan’s fMRI training course. The course, which took place in August 2016, is known to be among the most competitive in the country of its type and is a fully-funded NIH training course.

Whitney Geller and Jerry Chen are two highly-deserving students who were the first PAU representatives to attend the course.

Having been an integral part of establishing PAU’s first fully-functional neuroimaging lab, Whitney and Jerry were able to clearly demonstrate their neuroimaging skills and they went on to learn from some of the best neuroimagers in the field. In fact, the program was led by one of the most-respected names in cognitive neuroimaging and psychopathology, Professor John Jonides.

Whitney and Jerry’s advisor here at PAU, and director of the Emotion, Cognition, and Neuropsychology Lab , Dr. Stacie Warren enthused, “I am extremely proud of them both. Acceptance to the fMRI training course at Michigan is a significant accomplishment for both students and a fantastic first for PAU. I wish them the best of luck and can’t wait to hear how it goes.”

For more information about Michigan’s fMRI training course, please click here.

Emotion, Cognition, & neuropsychology laboratory