The Department of Psychological Science has a variety of laboratories that you can conduct research in. For more information on how to get involved, please contact the director of the specific laboratory. 

CABIN (Cognitive x Affective Behavior Integrative Neuroscience) Lab

Contact Dr. Carlson

cabin.lab@gmail.com

New Science 1205

Dr. Carlson is the Director of the Cognitive × Affective Behavior & Integrative Neuroscience (CABIN) laboratory. As the name suggests, the CABIN lab studies affective processing—especially aspects of affective processing that concern its interaction with cognition—integrating across behavioral and brain imaging measures (e.g., EEG/ERP, NIRS, and MRI). At any given time, the lab contains approximately 20 undergraduate and graduate students. Examples of recently completed or ongoing CABIN lab research projects include:

  • Identification of neuroplastic changes in the brain (measured by MRI) following attention training on a mobile device to reduce hyper-vigilance and anxiety.
  • Use of self-referential threat stimuli during attention training and the resultant changes in prefrontal cortex activity (measured by NIRS).
  • Functional and structural neuroimaging measures (i.e., NIRS and MRI) of mild traumatic brain injury or concussion and their relation to cognitive and affective symptom severity.
  • Time-course for the capture and hold of visuospatial attention by fearful and happy facial expressions.
  • The effects of stimulus valance, temporal delay, and individual differences in attention bias on attention bias variability.
  • Under conditions of conflicting gaze cues, fearful expression and eye-size guide attention.

Students in the CABIN lab often contribute to work that is presented at national conferences or published in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters. Examples include:

  • Torrence, R.*, Wylie, E.*, & Carlson, J. M. (in press). The time-course for the capture and hold of visuospatial attention by fearful and happy faces. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior.
  • Carlson, J. M., Torrence, R.*, & Vander Hyde, M.* (2016). Beware the eyes behind the mask: the capture and hold of selective attention by backward masked fearful eyes. Motivation & Emotion, 40, 498-505.
  • Carlson, J. M., Depetro, E.*, Maxwell, J.*, Harmon-Jones, E, & Hajcak, G. (2015). Gender moderates the association between dorsal medial prefrontal cortex volume and depressive symptoms in a subclinical sample. Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging, 233, 285-288.
  • Aday, J.*, Rizer, W.*, & Carlson, J. M. (in press). Neural mechanisms of emotions and affect. Jeon, M., Ed.  Affective Sciences in Human Factors and Human-Computer Interaction. San Diego: Academic Press.
  • Aday, J.* & Carlson, J. M. (April, 2016). Neuroplasticity in an extended amygdala network as the mechanism underlying attention bias modification training: A voxel-based morphometry pilot study. Poster presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Annual Meeting, New York, NY.
  • Beuntello, I.*, Rizer, W.*, & Carlson, J. M. (October, 2015). Contralateral attention-related attenuation of occipitotemporal electrocortical activity by backward masked snakes & guns. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.
  • Torrence, R.*, Kangas, K.*, & Carlson, J. M. (March, 2015) Rapid involvement of the prefrontal cortex during attentional bias to fearful faces: A near-infrared spectroscopy study. Poster presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA.
  • Kangas, K.*, Torrence, R.*, & Carlson, J. M. (March, 2015). Prefrontal cortex activation during an emotional stroop task: A near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) study. Poster presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA.
  • Wylie, E.*, Torrence, R.*, Reinke, K., & Carlson, J. M. (March, 2015). The time-course for the capture and hold of visuospatial attention by fearful faces. Poster presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA.
  • Weber, M.*, Rizer, W.*, Morrow, K.*, Kangas, K.*, Torrence, R.*, & Carlson, J. M. (November, 2014). Sustained, not habituated, activity in the human amygdala during threat-elicited attention. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.
  • Torrence, R.*, & Carlson, J. M. (November, 2014). Variability in human anterior insula gray matter volume predicts awareness for perithreshold backward masked fearful faces. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.
  • Depetro, E.*, Maxwell, J.*, & Carlson, J.M. (April, 2014). Reduced medial prefrontal cortical volumes associated with depressive traits in healthy individuals. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, Boston, MA.

Neuropsychopharmacology Lab

Contact Dr. Prus

New Science Facility 2305

Dr. Prus is the Director of the Neuropsychopharmacology laboratory. Our lab is dedicated to analyzing the neurological and behavioral effects of psychoactive drugs, particularly those used to treat illness such as depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia. Examples of recently completed or ongoing Neuropsychopharmacology lab research projects include:

  • Drug discrimination with various drugs of abuse, to determine subjective effects.
  • Effects of optogenetic (control with light) activation of dopamine neurons.
  • Use of an HPLC (High-performance liquid chromatography) apparatus to analyze neurotransmitter concentration.
  • Novel animal models for various conditions.
  • Cognitive effects of antipsychotic drugs, including assessing traditional and novel pharmacologic mechanisms.

Research in the Neuropsychopharmacology lab often becomes published in peer-reived journals or is presented at national conferences. Examples include: 

  • Prus, A. J., Mooney-Leber, S. M., Berquist, M. D., Pehrson, A. L., Porter, N. P., & Porter, J. H. (2015). The antidepressant drugs fluoxetine and duloxetine produce anxiolytic-like effects in a schedule-induced polydipsia paradigm in rats: enhancement of fluoxetine’s effects by the α2 adrenoceptor antagonist yohimbine. Behavioural pharmacology26(5), 489-494.
  • Keiser, A. A., Matazel, K. S., Esser, M. K., Feifel, D., & Prus, A. J. (2014). Systemic administration of the neurotensin NTS₁-receptor agonist PD149163 improves performance on a memory task in naturally deficient male Brown Norway rats. Experimental and clinical psychopharmacology22(6), 541.
  • Prus, A. J., Hillhouse, T. M., & LaCrosse, A. L. (2014). Acute, but not repeated, administration of the neurotensin NTS 1 receptor agonist PD149163 decreases conditioned footshock-induced ultrasonic vocalizations in rats. Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry49, 78-84.
  • Prus, A. J., Schuck, C. J., Rusch, K. R., & Carey, L. M. (2014). The Discriminative Stimulus Effects of the Neurotensin NTS1 Receptor Agonist PD149163 in Rats: Stimulus Generalization Testing with Dopamine D1 and D2 Receptor Ligands. Drug development research75(2), 47-58.