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Congratulations Megan!

September 23, 2016—

Megan Ichinose is on the Chancellors mental health initiative committee!

 

https://www.vanderbilt.edu/chancellor/committees/chancellors-strategic-planning-committee-on-mental-health-and-wellbeing/


Congratulations Isabel & Tom!

September 12, 2016—Congratulations on a new three-year grant from the National Science Foundation on Measuring, Mapping, and Modeling Perceptual Expertise; PI is Isabel Gauthier, co-PI is Thomas Palmeri, and Senior Investigators are Sun-Joo Cho from Vanderbilt, Gary Cottrell from UCSD, and Mike Tarr and Deva Ramanan from Carnegie Mellon. This project supports a collaborative interdisciplinary research network that aims to develop measures of individual differences in visual recognition, relate behavioral and neural markers of individual differences, develop models that explain individual differences, and relate models with neural data.


Congratulations, David and Camilla!

September 9, 2016—Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth Discussed in Nature The SMPY (Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth) was the topic of a feature news article published in the journal Nature on September 8th. The SMPY was found by Professor Julian Stanley in 1972, and is now run by Professor David Lubinski and Dean Camilla Benbow. Congratulations to David and Camilla on a fascinating article about an amazing research study.


Congratulations Steve!

September 7, 2016—Steve Hollon has won the 2016 Joseph Zubin award from the Society for Research in Psychopathology (SRP)! The SRP bestows this award each year to one deserving individual for lifetime contributions to the understanding of psychopathology. It was established in 1986 and officially named the Joseph Zubin Award in 1990. It is considered the most prestigious award for psychopathology research.

See 

http://www.psychopathology.org/awardwinners

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Zubin_Award

 


Congratulations Sohee, Geoff and Leslie!

August 26, 2016—A few of our faculty were highlighted at the 2016 Fall Faculty Assembly. Sohee Park and Geoff Woodman received a Chancelor's research award for their groundbreaking work on using tDCS for improving people with schizophrenia in error detection and control and Leslie Smith was congratulated for her 25 years of service in teaching and undergraduate education at Vanderbilt.


Congratulations, David, Jonathan and Harrison!

August 15, 2016—SMPY investigators win three awards for research excellence! Congratulations to the investigators of the Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth (SMPY), who won three 2016 Awards from the Mensa Education and Research Foundation! These awards are given for "outstanding research on intelligence, intellectual giftedness and related fields." Study Co-director David Lubinski won one for his recent Psychological science article; former student Jonathan Wai (MS'05, PhD'09) won one for his recent Intelligence article; and former post-doc Harrison Kell won one for his recent Psychological Science article. More information about these articles and their respective awards can be found here: http://www.mensafoundation.org/what-we-do/awards-and-recognition/awards-for-excellence-in-research/afe-winners1/winners-2015-2016/


Congratulations Eva!

August 8, 2016—Congratulations goes to Eva Sawyer for winning the J.B. Johnston Club for Evolutionary Neuroscience, Thomas Karger Thesis Award.

Eva Sawyer was a Ph.D. student in the Neuroscience program, who graduated in 2016, and carried out her research in Jon Kass' lab.

Learn more about the JBJC at this link

 http://jbjclub.ning.com/


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Events

September 27, 2016 – Clinical Science Brown Bag Series

David Schlundt PhD

Department of Psychology

Vanderbilt University

12:10pm

Wilson Hall Room 316

“The Healthy Weight Monitoring Study: Using Big Data Tools to Study the Microstructure of Everyday Eating Behavior”

The Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), created as part of the Affordable Care Act, has funded a large-scale effort to create nationwide networks that can use electronic health records data to enable large-scale observational studies and clinical trials.  Vanderbilt is collaborating with Meharry Medical College, Vanderbilt Healthcare Affiliated Network, Greenway, Duke University, University of North Carolina, and Health Sciences South Carolina to create the Mid South Clinical Research Data Network (Mid South CDRN).  By combining these health systems, the Mid South CDRN can access health data for up to 30 million individuals.

                During the first phase of PCORI funding, each of the CDRN’s created a prospective cohort study, the Healthy Weight Cohort Study.  Patients within the CDRN were enrolled, completed a baseline survey, and provided consent to access electronic health records retrospectively and prospectively. The Mid South CDRN enrolled approximately 15,000 people in the Healthy Weight Cohort Study (HWCS). In order to demonstrate the feasibility of recruiting participants into a more involved study, we initiated the Healthy Weight Monitoring Study (HWMS).  The goal of the HWMS was to have a sample of participants in the HWCS monitor their food intake for two weeks using a web-based tool for collecting Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) data.  The EMA tool allowed participants to describe the environmental, social and emotional context of each meal or snack; characterize their eating behavior; and capture location using the GPS features of the smart phone.  The EMA data is linked with the baseline questionnaire from the HWCS, and will eventually be linked to electronic health records data.

We now have a data set from 334 participants who documented 12,220 meals and snacks. I will describe the methods we used to enroll and manage participation online, the tools used to collect the EMA data, and the resulting data set.  I will focus on strategies for analyzing data by focusing on the relationship between daily mood changes, location, meal type, and overeating. I will focus on how to extract information about daily patterns from the repeated measures data, and on using mixed-linear models to analyze within person associations between context and behavior.


September 28, 2016 – CCN Brown Bag Series (Co-hosted with VVRC)

Dennis Levi

Professor of Vision Science & Optometry

University of California, Berkeley

http://vision.berkeley.edu/?p=417

4:00pm

MRBIII rm. 1220

“Recovering stereovision”

Stereopsis is the impression of three-dimensionality—of objects “popping out in depth”—that most humans get when they view real-world objects with both eyes, based on binocular disparity—the differences between the two retinal images of the same world. However, a substantial proportion of the population is stereoblind or stereo deficient due to strabismus and/or amblyopia. This impairment may have a substantial impact on visuomotor tasks, difficulties in playing sports in children and locomoting safely in older adults. Impaired stereopsis may also limit career options. This talk will review several promising new approaches to recovering stereopsis through perceptual learning and videogame play. 


September 29, 2016 – Neuroscience Brown Bag Series

Samantha Hauser

Department of Hearing and Speech

Vanderbilt University

12:10pm

Wilson Hall Room 316

“Behavioral Consequences of Cochlear Histopathology Following Noise Overexposure in Nonhuman Primates”

Noise exposure is one of the most common etiologies of hearing loss. Though it has been studied in other animal models, the nonhuman primate model of noise induced hearing loss allows for studies of anatomy, physiology, and behavior within the same subjects under controlled exposure conditions. We found that macaque monkeys needed to be exposed to a more intense sound to cause overt hearing loss compared to rodents. These permanent changes in physiological measures and cochlear histopathology are correlated with impairment on variety of behavioral detection tasks. Detection of tones and masked tones and the bandwidth of auditory perceptual filters are affected in a frequency specific manner. These changes are correlated with the frequency specific destruction of inner and outer hair cells. Detection of tones in modulated maskers post-exposure showed no difference from steady state noise maskers, whereas pre-exposure results show a threshold benefit in maskers with low frequency modulations. Such temporal processing impairments were likely related to inner hair cell ribbon synaptopathy. These results reveal that behavioral effects of noise exposure are similar to those seen in humans and provide preliminary information on the correlations between noise exposure, cochlear histopathology, and perceptual changes in hearing.


October 3, 2016 – Quantitative Methods Colloquium Series

Simpler isn't better, it's just simpler: OLS regression weights make better predictions than simple alternative weights in realistic simulations

Michael Nelson, Quantitative Methods, Vanderbilt Dept. of Psychology & Human Development

Several respected statisticians (e.g., Wainer, 1976; Dana, 1979; Dana and Dawes, 2004; Waller and Jones, 2010) have argued that researchers should consider using simpler alternatives to ordinary least squares (OLS) regression weights, such as equal weights or correlation weights, which are less sensitive to sample variation and are therefore less prone to problems of overfitting. I present the results of a series of Monte Carlo simulations comparing OLS, equal, and correlation regression weights, updating simulations by Dana and Dawes (2004) to examine specific scenarios. Simulation results show that alternative weights consistently improve model predictions only when a set of parameters can be matched with the optimal weight type for its particular population characteristics, an impossible requirement given realistic limitations on a researcher's a priori knowledge. As such, OLS weights are generally the best choice, though researchers must be careful not to attribute more precision to predictions than the data allow.


October 4, 2016 – Clinical Science Brown Bag Series

Maureen MCHugo PhD

Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences

Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

https://medschool.vanderbilt.edu/psychiatry/faculty/primary/mchugomk

12:10pm

Wilson Hall Room 316

“Increased Amplitude Of Low Frequency Fluctuations But Normal Functional Connectivity Of The Hippocampus In Schizophrenia”

Clinical and preclinical studies have established that the hippocampus is hyperactive in schizophrenia, making it a possible biomarker for drug development. Increased hippocampal connectivity, which can be studied conveniently with resting state imaging, has been proposed as a readily accessible corollary of hippocampal hyperactivity. In recent work, we tested the hypothesis that hippocampal activity and connectivity are increased in patients with schizophrenia using several common methods. Our results indicate that although intrinsic hippocampal activity may be increased in schizophrenia, this finding may not extend to aggregate functional connectivity. Neuroimaging methods that assess hippocampal activity may be more promising for the identification of a biomarker for schizophrenia.


October 5, 2016 – CCN Brown Bag Series

Jennifer Trueblood

Department of Psychology

Vanderbilt University

Wednesday, 10/5/2016

12:10pm

WH 113

“The Healthy Weight Monitoring Study: Using Big Data Tools to Study the Microstructure of Everyday Eating Behavior”

The Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), created as part of the Affordable Care Act, has funded a large-scale effort to create nationwide networks that can use electronic health records data to enable large-scale observational studies and clinical trials.  Vanderbilt is collaborating with Meharry Medical College, Vanderbilt Healthcare Affiliated Network, Greenway, Duke University, University of North Carolina, and Health Sciences South Carolina to create the Mid South Clinical Research Data Network (Mid South CDRN).  By combining these health systems, the Mid South CDRN can access health data for up to 30 million individuals.

During the first phase of PCORI funding, each of the CDRN’s created a prospective cohort study, the Healthy Weight Cohort Study.  Patients within the CDRN were enrolled, completed a baseline survey, and provided consent to access electronic health records retrospectively and prospectively. The Mid South CDRN enrolled approximately 15,000 people in the Healthy Weight Cohort Study (HWCS). In order to demonstrate the feasibility of recruiting participants into a more involved study, we initiated the Healthy Weight Monitoring Study (HWMS).  The goal of the HWMS was to have a sample of participants in the HWCS monitor their food intake for two weeks using a web-based tool for collecting Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) data.  The EMA tool allowed participants to describe the environmental, social and emotional context of each meal or snack; characterize their eating behavior; and capture location using the GPS features of the smart phone.  The EMA data is linked with the baseline questionnaire from the HWCS, and will eventually be linked to electronic health records data.

We now have a data set from 334 participants who documented 12,220 meals and snacks. I will describe the methods we used to enroll and manage participation online, the tools used to collect the EMA data, and the resulting data set.  I will focus on strategies for analyzing data by focusing on the relationship between daily mood changes, location, meal type, and overeating. I will focus on how to extract information about daily patterns from the repeated measures data, and on using mixed-linear models to analyze within person associations between context and behavior.


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