Brain and Environmental Training Towards Emotional Resilience
(10/23/2015) 66 minutes


Objective of the lecture is to demonstrate how science can help solve clinical problems through imaging technology that opens a window into the brain's mechanisms. Pediatric bipolar disorder is selected as a clinical illness model to study affective, cognitive and sensori-motor domains. On behavioral characterization, executive function, working memory, verbal memory attention and affect regulation were uncovered and shown to persist despite medication or illness status. The brain circuitry model was mapped to reveal impaired fronto-limbic, occipito-limbic, occipito-temporo-frontal, dorsal and ventral fronto-striatal, and cortico-cortical circuits. Furthermore, it became apparent that negative emotions impact affective and cognitive circuitry functions, independently and at the interface of the ventral and dorsal brain circuits. This information then led to two complementary programmatic trails of research intervention: (1) Specific pharmacotherapy agents targeted to maximize the neurocognitive function, and reverse the clinical symptoms and the brain circuitry dysfunction, and (2) The neuroscience informed child and family focused cognitive therapy or "RAINBOW" therapy. This research inquiry could serve as a prototype in forging neuroscience informed clinical interventions model termed the ABCD model - Assessment, Brain functional understanding, Chemical intervention, and Dynamics of environment addressed through individualized psychosocial intervention.