Adult Track Faculty offering Research Placements
Ana Abrantes: Dr. Abrantes' research is focused on two general areas: 1) improving treatment outcomes of individuals with addictive behaviors and 2) increasing physical activity among individuals with mental health problems -- with an emphasis on the use of technology to support interventions. Her current projects involve examining exercise for smoking cessation, a Fitbit physical activity intervention for depressed alcohol dependent women, development of a smartphone physical activity app for alcohol dependent patients, tDCS for increasing exercise adherence in depressed individuals, development of a peer-facilitated physical activity intervention delivered in the context of methadone maintenance, and development of a smartphone app to help opioid dependent patients discontinue buprenorphine.
Michael Armey: Phenomenology, risk-factors, and treatment of suicidal ideation and behavior, ecological momentary assessment, and fMRI research methods to explore the interrelations of mood, cognitions, behavior, and neural circuits associated with suicide and self-injury. Additionally, the interface of technology and psychological research, including the use of smartphone applications and sensor data to predict risk.
Brandon Gaudiano: Dr. Gaudiano works as a psychologist at Butler Hospital and the Providence VA Medical Center. He also is Primary Faculty in Brown’s Mindfulness Center. Dr. Gaudiano’s research includes psychosocial treatment development, testing, and dissemination/implementation work for patients with severe psychiatric disorders (psychosis, mood disorders, comorbid substance use, and suicidality). His interventions frequently focus on the use of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and mobile technologies. Projects for the upcoming year include the development of a novel ecological momentary intervention for patients with psychosis, suicide prevention programs (video- and telephone-based) for patients with leaving the psychiatric hospital, and a transitions of care program for patients with comorbid bipolar disorder and substance use disorders.
Kirsten Langdon: Dr. Langdon's research is centered on two overlapping areas: 1) elucidating the interplay of mood/anxiety-based processes and co-occurring substance use disorders through experimental paradigms, and 2) developing specialized intervention programs designed to target these malleable risk factors to improve treatment outcomes for individuals with co-occurring mood/anxiety and substance use disorders, particularly through digital health platforms. Recent projects involve utilizing EMA methodologies to examine cognitive-affective risk factors associated with poor smoking cessation outcomes; development of a combined computer- and text message-delivered intervention to support stabilization in buprenorphine treatment for opioid use disorder; application of a text-message based program to encourage continued engagement in medications for opioid use disorder following release from prison; and examination of a mobile peer-support tool as adjunct to standard treatment for opioid use disorder.
Maria Mancebo: The OCD & Anxiety Research Program has a research placement focused on effectiveness, dissemination and implementation of evidence-based treatments (EBTs) for Obsessive Compulsive Spectrum disorders (particular interest in OCD and hoarding) and anxiety disorders. Current research studies include: 1) examining effectiveness of team-based behavioral therapy service delivery model in a hospital setting; 2) effectiveness of video-based exposure therapy, 3) evaluating effectiveness of training models of exposure-based therapies and 4) predictors of intensive ERP outcomes. The resident will have opportunities to assist with manuscript preparation, research coordination, data analyses, and grant submissions. The resident will also have an opportunity to collaborate on manuscripts using data sets from other OCD projects. Individual Research Supervision is provided weekly by Dr. Maria Mancebo.
John McGeary: Dr. McGeary’s research focuses on the intersection of clinical psychology, neuroscience, and genetics to inform questions of etiology and treatment. He directs a molecular lab located at the Providence VA Medical Center where he is also a staff psychologist treating Veterans with substance use disorders. He actively collaborates on 65+ research projects with investigators at Brown, affiliated hospitals, consortia (e.g., Million Veteran Program), and collaborating institutions around the country. Dr. McGeary’s research interests include: 1) genetic and epigenetic variation associated with psychiatric and behavioral phenotypes (and recently with phenotypes of interest to researchers in Dermatology, Surgery, Infectious Disease, Neuroscience, Computer science, Gerontology, and Public Health); 2) the role of sleep in suicide, addiction, and other psychopathology; and 3) the use of neurostimulation for treatment of addiction. Particular strengths in his research portfolio include studies of addiction, depression, nonpsychiatric behavioral phenotypes (e.g., sleep, exercise, & obesity) and pharmacogenetics (the use of genetic profiles to predict medication efficacy and side-effects).
Robert Miranda & Hayley Treloar Padovano: The chief goal of our research program is to advance treatment options for adults and adolescents who struggle with alcohol and other substance misuse. Accomplishing this goal involves leveraging human laboratory paradigms and mobile technologies (e.g., ecological momentary assessment [EMA] methods), establishing developmentally sensitive tools for screening medications, and learning how to best translate findings from clinical research to practice. Integrating theories and methods from psychology and cognitive-affective neuroscience, our laboratory uses a translational approach to investigate addictive behaviors, including alcohol and other drug misuse and other health-risk behaviors. Much of our research focuses on elucidating factors that confer liability for addictive behaviors during adolescence and how interventions can leverage these factors to improve treatment initiatives. Clinical residents are afforded the opportunity to learn about and develop new, innovative approaches to studying addiction processes and mechanisms of treatment effects, author manuscripts from existing datasets, and collaborate on new projects. Current funded projects include medication trials for alcohol use disorder, a longitudinal study that pairs human laboratory paradigms with EMA to examine how changes in adolescents’ alcohol cue reactivity and subjective responses to alcohol predict AUD pathology, and a project that leverages EMA methods to elucidate associations between stress, nicotine craving, and use among adolescents who are sexual minorities.
Lindsay Orchowski: Sexual assault prevention, including the development and evaluation of approaches for young adult, college, and military populations; The intersections between sexual violence, substance use and other health risk behaviors; Perpetrator characteristics; Mental health consequences of sexual violence.
Jessica Peters: Dr. Peters’ research focuses broadly on mechanisms underlying the development and exacerbation of borderline personality disorder and related emotion-driven, risky behavior in adolescents and adults. Current projects include 1.) behavioral and neuroimaging studies on how anger rumination may function as a maladaptive emotion regulation strategy that increases interpersonal dysfunction and risky behavior, 2.) research on menstrual cycle exacerbation of BPD symptom expression, 3.) psychological mechanisms underlying how minority stress increases risk of self-injurious behavior and suicide in LGBTQ+ adolescents, with the goal of identifying potential intervention targets, and 4.) applying network analysis and longitudinal methods to large datasets of adult and adolescent BPD symptoms. Clinical residents would have the opportunity to be involved with one or more of these projects and author manuscripts from existing datasets, as well as potentially collect new, related data depending on interests.
Lisa Uebelacker: This research placement includes study of physical activity, yoga, and integrated primary care interventions for depression and/or chronic pain. Specifically, ongoing studies include: a) a study of which components of a yoga intervention help to increase yoga practice in people with opioid use disorder and chronic pain; and b) development of yoga for depressed adolescents. Projects which are currently in a follow-up and data analysis phase include: a) a comparison programs to help people with depression increase physical activity; b) study of an integrated behavioral health program for people with HIV, chronic pain, and depression symptoms.