Category Archives: Research

Student Spotlight – Francesca Walsh

This month’s student spotlight is on MS student Franchesca Walsh. Fran is an MS student working with in Youngbin Kwak’s lab. She is interested in neuroeconomics. Together with her advisor and co-author Erik Cheries, she recently published a commentary entitled, “‘Incentive hope’ and the nature of impulsivity in low-socioeconomic-status individuals” in Behavioral and Brain Sciences (Cambridge University Press) in which they respond to Anselme and Gunturkun’s Incentive Hope Hypothesis. This motivation mechanism theory brings together neuroscience literature on reward uncertainty and decision making with biology field observations of animal foraging behavior. Continue reading

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UMass Neurosciences Publications – March 2019

The featured researcher is David Moorman,  who is an assistant professor in the department of Pyschological & Brain Sciences. Dr. Moorman had 3 publications appear on PubMed this month. His research examines how neuronal ensembles encode reward. He uses cutting edge techniques to optically record and stimulate neurons while animals are behaving.

Here’s what’ new for ‘ ”University of Massachusetts” AND Amherst AND neuroscience’ in PubMed. These publications appeared on line in March. They are just a fraction of the research that occurs on campus. Continue reading

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Innovation Marketplace

The innovation marketplace is a place to pitch an idea for a collaboration to obtain a Neuroengineering seed grant.

The goal is to find new avenues of collaboration between neuroscientists and engineers.

Faculty are invited to submit a pitch by filling out an online form. The pitch is simply a short explanation of a problem that they have identified that could be solved with collaboration. For example, a neuroscientist may have identified the need for a new tool. Or an engineer may have designed a tool and is interested in finding new uses for it. Similarly, this could extend to analytic methods or devices.  Continue reading

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Neuroengineering Seed Grants

Neuroengineering is the combination of fields of neurosciences and engineering. It includes the development of devices or methodology to monitor brain activity as well as therapeutic devices that help overcome neurological conditions. It could also encompass new means of utilizing the brain’s activity.

Goal: Initiate new collaborative work in Neuroengineering. The proposal should lead towards new external funding in the field of neuroengineering.

Award Amounts: $10,000 – $30,000. Anticipated total funding, $100,000. Funds can be used for anything except faculty teaching buyout. Funds are awarded only to UMass Amherst faculty members. Continue reading

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Neurosciences Faculty Forums – Spring 2019

The Neurosciences Faculty Forum is a lunchtime group that meets twice a month. It gives faculty members and post-docs from across the UMass campus a chance to meet and discuss their research ideas in an informal setting. Powerpoint slides are discouraged (maximum of 3). The goal is to increase understanding and look for areas of cooperation and collaboration. Continue reading

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UMass Neuroscience Publications – Dec. 2018

What’s new for ‘”university of Massachusetts” AND amherst AND neuroscience’ in PubMed.

  • Beery AK. Inclusion of females does not increase variability in rodent research studies. Curr Opin Behav Sci. 2018 Oct;23:143-149. doi: 10.1016/j.cobeha.2018.06.016. Epub 2018 Aug 2. PubMed PMID: 30560152; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6294461.
  • Goodwin NL, Lopez SA, Lee NS, Beery AK. Comparative role of reward in long-term peer and mate relationships in voles. Horm Behav. 2018 Dec 7. pii: S0018-506X(18)30330-1. doi: 10.1016/j.yhbeh.2018.10.012. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 30528833.
  • Chen XJ, Liu LL, Wang Y, Yang TX, Huang J, Li K, Zeng YW, Cheung EFC, Shum DHK, van Amelsvoort T, Chan RCK. Neural correlates of the effect of implementation intention on prospective memory. Psych J. 2018 Dec 5. doi: 10.1002/pchj.257. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 30520271.
  • Mantua J, Grillakis A, Mahfouz SH, Taylor MR, Brager AJ, Yarnell AM, Balkin TJ, Capaldi VF, Simonelli G. A systematic review and meta-analysis of sleep architecture and chronic traumatic brain injury. Sleep Med Rev. 2018 Oct;41:61-77. doi: 10.1016/j.smrv.2018.01.004. Epub 2018 Feb 2. Review. PubMed PMID: 29452727.
  • Doan SN, DeYoung G, Fuller-Rowell TE, Liu C, Meyer J. Investigating relations among stress, sleep and nail cortisol and DHEA. Stress. 2018 Mar;21(2):188-193. doi: 10.1080/10253890.2018.1429398. Epub 2018 Jan 26. PubMed PMID: 29373934.
  • Mott M, Luna VM, Park JY, Downes GB, Epley K, Ono F. Expressing acetylcholine receptors after innervation suppresses spontaneous vesicle release and causes muscle fatigue. Sci Rep. 2017 May 10;7(1):1674. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-01900-3. PubMed PMID: 28490756; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5431962.
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