Vanessa Troiani, PhD
The goal of my research is to understand the behavioral and genetic contributions to atypical motivational circuitry in the brain and how this manifests in different psychiatric disorders. I study the structure and function of brain regions involved in motivated attention, including reward-processing structures like the amygdala, nucleus accumbens, and orbitofrontal cortex. My scientific worldview is inherently multidisciplinary, as I am interested in how atypical motivation can manifest in multiple disorders, from autism to obesity to addiction. I use a variety of techniques in this work, including psychophysics, eye tracking, structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging, and exploring clinical phenotypes using the electronic health record and questionnaires.