5:00 PM – 6:00 PM Poster Viewing and Judging; 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM Lecture; 7:00 PM – 7:30 PM Translational Discussion and Q & A; 7:30 PM – 8:30 PM Reception and Poster Viewing
The New York Academy of Medicine, 1216 Fifth Avenue at 103rd Street, New York, NY 10029
Free, but advance registration is required
Animal models of associative threat learning provide a basis for understanding human fears and anxiety. Building on research from animal models, we explore a range of means maladaptive defensive responses can be diminished in humans. Extinction and emotion regulation, techniques adapted in cognitive behavioral therapy, can be used to control learned defensive responses via inhibitory signals from the ventromedial prefrontal cortex to the amygdala. One drawback of these techniques is that these responses are only inhibited and can return, with one factor being stress. Dr. Phelps will review research examining the lasting control of maladaptive defensive responses by targeting memory reconsolidation and present evidence suggesting that the behavioral interference of reconsolidation in humans diminishes involvement of the prefrontal cortex inhibitory circuitry, although there are limitations to its efficacy. She will also describe two novel behavioral techniques that might result in a more lasting fear reduction, the first by providing control over stressor and the second by substituting a novel, neutral cue for the aversive unconditioned stimulus.
About the Speaker
Elizabeth A. Phelps, PhD, received her doctorate from Princeton University in 1989, served on the faculty of Yale University until 1999, and is currently the Julius Silver Professor of Psychology and Neural Science at New York University. Her laboratory has earned widespread acclaim for its groundbreaking research on how the human brain processes emotion, particularly as it relates to learning, memory and decision making. Dr. Phelps is the recipient of the 21st Century Scientist Award from the James S. McDonnell Foundation and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Association for Psychological Science, the Society for Neuroethics, and Society for Neuroeconomics. Dr. Phelps was the President of the Society for Neuroeconomics, the Association for Psychological Science, the Society for Social and Affective Neuroscience, and served as the editor of the journal Emotion.