The Effects of Climate Change on Mental Health: Planning and Policy Implications
Dr. Rajendra Morey's career as a clinician-scientist has been motivated by a keen interest in understanding the structural and functional brain changes associated with neuropsychiatric disorders, as well as the effects of environment, behavior, and treatments. He has used functional MRI to elucidate how PTSD symptoms alter the balance of prefrontal-limbic signaling during tasks of executive function, emotion distraction, symptom provocation, and memory. He has conducted several methodological studies with MRI examining morphometry and volumetry in the medial temporal lobe and subcortical structures to help guide investigators in selecting brain segmentation strategies. His recent work in PTSD has investigated associative fear learning as a model system for understanding functional brain disruptions in PTSD and trauma. These studies have involved fear generalization and extinction generalization paradigms. Other research has focused on investigating promising genetic modulators of brain dysfunction in PTSD. Dr. Morey has funding from a VA Merit Grant (CX002293) to map subject-specific structural and functional connectivity to parse the unique contributions of subconcussive blast, and mild TBI is to. In his role leading an international Consortium (PTSD Neuroimaging Working Group in the Psychiatric Genetics Consortium) he has formulated a blueprint to identify replicable genetic associations and new insights into the biological underpinnings of PTSD at a scope that is unprecedented in the field of traumatic stress. These efforts, which are funded by an NIH RO1 grants (MH111671 and MH129832), have triggered a renewed impetus and a sharpened focus on investigating structural and functional brain differences, their genetic determinants, environmental modulators, and investigating the genetic vulnerability to the effects of trauma and the onset of PTSD. He has also been actively investigating competing harmonization of neuroimaging data to facilitate global scale neuroscience collaboration.
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