Training Area: Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience|Cognition, Language, and Development|Health Psychology and Clinical Science
Dr. Weierich’s lab examines how the brain and the visual system process affective information, and how these processes contribute to the onset and maintenance of stress states and disorders. The lab takes a systems neuroscience approach to translational investigations of some of the neural and behavioral mechanisms associated with stress.
The lab uses a variety of methods, including computerized experimental tasks modified from vision science, eye-tracking, salivary immunoassay, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), to investigate the mechanisms underlying both normative and maladaptive affective processing. In particular, the lab pursues three related lines of research.
First, the lab investigates the role of visual attentional processing in stress-related states and disorders using behavioral paradigms developed by vision scientists. Second, the lab investigates the phenomenology of post-traumatic stress, with particular emphasis on the re-experiencing and hyperarousal symptoms, using measurement methods that include stress hormone assay. Third, the lab uses fMRI and DTI to investigate the neural systems involved in affective processing in stress states and disorders. The lab is working toward an integration of these lines to more comprehensively map the systems and trajectories of pathological affective processing in stress states and disorders.