Putting the brain in disease prevention

Our research examines the social neuroscientific foundations of eating and other lifestyle behaviors. We are specifically interested in the role of the social brain in the consumption of calorie-dense food items beyond the boundaries of homeostatic need. The social neuroscience perspective places special emphasis on the social and ecological context in which behaviours occur, and so many of our studies involve systematic examination of these contemporaneously with eating-related brain processes.

In addition to our primary focus on knowledge generation around brain-behaviour relationships involving eating, we are equally interested in applications of such knowledge to the prevention of obesity and other chronic illnesses. As a consequence, we are broadly interested in conducting the foundational work necessary to import neuroscience methods into large, population-level data collection initiatives and clinical contexts in which they are needed around the world.

Equipment and Facilities:

The Prevention Neuroscience Laboratory is equipped with a MagVenture MagPro x100 rTMS system (cTBS capable, with EMG), several mobile brain imaging systems (multichannel fNIRS), and facilities for standardized testing of food choice.

Where to find us:

We are located in Room 2105 Burt Matthews Hall (BMH). If you are here for a study, please take the Columbia Street entrance to the University, enter BMH from the main entrance on Ring Road; once inside, make a right turn and proceed upstairs to the lounge area on the second floor. A research assistant will meet you in the lounge area.

  1. Dec. 2, 2019Prevention Neuroscience

    Calling for submissions for a new Research Topic on the neuroscience of disease prevention. This collection will be hosted by Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, and edited by Peter Hall (UW), Hasan Ayaz (Drexel) and Teresa Liu-Ambrose (UBC).

  2. Nov. 27, 2019New applications for brain stimulation

    We are using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) to explore new approaches to diagnosis, treatment and outcome assessment in clinical trials. Together with industry partners, we are expanding the scope of brain stimulation applications.

  3. Nov. 16, 2019A beautiful setting for science

    Last week Harvard Medical School hosted an intensive training fellowship for transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). This was an outstanding opportunity to connect with clinical and research colleagues, all of whom share a common interest in the goal of integrating TMS methods into research and practise. More to come!

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