Mood and Anxiety Disorders Research Program (MADRP)


Supervisor: K. Luan Phan, MD

Four Main Themes:
1) Functional Neuroanatomy of Emotion, Cognition, and Decision Making
2) Functional Neuroanatomy Mood and Anxiety Disorders
3) Neurofunctional Markers of Treatment Response in Mood and Anxiety Disorders
4) Functional Neuroimaging of Drug Effects on Affective Experience and Cognition

Patient-oriented research in our interdisciplinary Clinical and Research Programs crosses both UIC and the VA and aims to discover the behavioral and brain mechanisms that implement the regulation of affect and motivational salience in humans. It aims to translate these discoveries to gain a better understanding of the cause and maintenance of and to develop new and better treatments for mental illnesses in which dysregulated affect and motivation are cardinal features.

Our studies integrate affective, cognitive, and social neuroscience perspectives to dissect human behavior and psychopathology. Within these broad approaches, we take a multi-level analytic approach from internal milieu to peripheral psychophysiology to (c)overt actions to brain function to pharmacologic manipulation. Our lab primarily uses magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, DTI, VBM) and electroencephalography (EEG, event-related potentials) as predominant tools to assess brain circuit function as they relate to affect control and motivational salience. We study human participants across the lifespan, from childhood to adulthood. Our lab concentrates our efforts on illnesses such as post-traumatic stress disorder, social phobia and depression. We take a longitudinal view of illness, and thus often study patient participants before, during, and after completion of treatment.

Current/Active Projects:

  • Negative Valence Brain Targets and Predictors of Anxiety and Depression (SSRI and CBT) Treatment. Funded by National Institutes of Health R01MH101497
  • Brain Markers of Anxiety Disorders and (SSRI and CBT) Treatment in Children and Adolescents. Funded by National Institutes of Health R01MH086517
  • Brain and Mental Health RECOVERY. Funded by Veterans Affairs Merit
  • Neurofunctional Markers of SSRI Response in PTSD. Funded by Veterans Affairs Merit
  • Cannabinoid Control of Fear Extinction Neural Circuits in Humans. Funded by National Institutes of Health R21MH093917

Potential Intern Roles:

For prospective interns, the rotation is a mix of clinical/research activities. We prefer involvement that spans across the entire 12 months of internship.

  • Learn and conduct assessments using research instruments; learn and deliver CBT treatment; learn and conduct behavioral and functional neuroimaging data analyses, and prepare manuscripts for peer-review publications as lead or 2nd author.