Bioengineering in Psychiatry (BiP) Seminar Series

The Bioengineering in Psychiatry (BiP) Seminar Series provides opportunities for collaboration between pre-doc BioE students and faculty at both the Bioengineering and Psychiatry departments.

 

Upcoming Seminars

Vogt_Spring_23

Previous Seminars

BiP Sem Kozai

Dr. Cui Seminar

speaker series bioengineering in psychiatry

Previous Seminar

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
lee fisher

Spinal cord stimulation to restore sensation and reduce phantom limb pain after limb amputation

by Lee Fisher, PhD

Associate Professor of Physical Medicine, Rehabilitation, and Bioengineering

Despite important advances in the design of prosthetic devices, loss of a limb causes major challenges that often limit participation in activities of daily living. For people with upper-limb amputation, prosthetic adoption rates remain poor and device control is often unintuitive. Those with lower-limb amputation experience impaired balance control, abnormal gait, and an increased rate of falls. Across both groups, upwards of 85% of people also experience debilitating phantom limb pain. All these problems can be attributed, in part, to the loss of sensory feedback from the limb after amputation. this talk, I will present our research efforts focused on development of devices to stimulate the spinal cord to restore sensory feedback in people with limb amputation. Using devices that are currently implanted in over 50,000 people every year to treat chronic pain, we have demonstrated that spinal cord stimulation can evoke sensations in the missing limb to improve control of prosthetic limbs and reduce phantom limb pain in people with both upper- and lower-limb amputation.

Nov. 4 at 10:00 AM

Hosted online via Zoom. 

For more information, please email ans372@pitt.edu.

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
zach freyberg

Opening a new window into the cell via situ cryo-electron tomography

by Zachary Freyberg, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Assistant Professor of Cell Biology

A revolution is occurring in microscopy. Breakthroughs in cryo-electron tomography (cryo-ET) have enabled the three-dimensional visualization of cells and the structures within at unprecedented resolution and in their native contexts. Using cryo-ET in secretory cells, we have discovered a new organelle a novel, highly dynamic vesicular form of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) that we termed Ribosome-Associated Vesicles (RAVS). RAVS are conserved across multiple cell types and species. These organelles carry actively translating ribosomes to local sites and interact with mitochondria via direct membrane contacts, shedding light on the means by which ER and its subcompartments communicate with other organelles. In parallel, we have applied cryo-ET to the visualization of disease processes directly in the cells of patients. In situ cryo-ET approaches therefore open the door to fundamental discoveries in cell biology and their translation to human disease.

Oct. 28 at 10:00 AM

Hosted online via Zoom

For more information, please email ans372@pitt.edu

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
meryl butters headshot

Mood Matters: Major Depression, Late-Life Cognitive Impairment and Dementia Risk

by Meryl Butters, PhD

Professor of Psychiatry and Clinical and Translational Science

This presentation will cover (1) a review of the literature showing that depression at any age, but especially in later-life, increases one's risk of developing progressive dementia; (2) a unifying neurobiological framework comprised of multiple pathways linking depression to cognitive impairment and various long-term outcomes; and (3) several exciting, recent intervention studies aimed at preventing depression-associated cognitive decline.

Oct. 21 at 10:00 AM

Hosted online via zoom

For more information email ans372@pitt.edu

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Mazefsky Carla headshot

Autism and Emotion Dysregulation: The Complexity, Variability, and Potential to Improve Quality of Life

by Carla Mazefsky, PhD

Professor of Psychiatry, Psychology, and Clinical and Translational Science

This talk will provide an overview of key studies and findings from the Regulation of Emotion in Autistic Children, Teens, and Adults (REAACT) research program at the University of Pittsburgh Department of Psychiatry. Attention will be paid to heterogeneity in emotion dysregulation in austistic individuals and its associated impact on mental health and behavior. Illustrative examples of the potential for engineering to inform autism research will be provided. 

Oct. 7 at 10:00 AM

Hosted online via zoom

For more information email ans372@pitt.edu

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Rebecca Thurston headshot

Menopause and Its Symptoms: Implications for Cardiovascular and Brain Health

by Rebecca Thurston, PhD

Professor of Psychiatry, Clinical and Translational Science, Epidemiology, and Psychology

The menopause transition is universal midlife transition among women that is commonly accompanied by changes in sex steroid hormones and the occurrence of symptoms such as hot flashes and sleep problems. Midlife and the menopause transition is also a critical time for cardiovascular and brain health that can set the stage for the occurrence of events such as heart attacks, strokes, and dementia later in life. This talk will discuss the menopause transition and its implications for women's cardiovascular and brain health as they age.

Apr. 22 at 10:00 AM

Hosted online via zoom

For more information email d.turk@pitt.edu

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Headshot of Carmen Andreescu

Cutting edge in Psychiatry - helping or hurting?

by Carmen Andreescu, MD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry

Advanced imaging and Al techniques have been hailed as opening a new era in Psychiatry, with breakthroughs in diagnosis and treatment prediction. This talk with review the diagnostic and pharmacotherapeutic background on which imaging and Al are applied, will describe the challenges and limitations of translating data into clinical meaningful results, and will propose directions through which Bioengineering may help to close the gap between research and clinical practice in Psychiatry. 

Apr. 1 at 10:00 AM

Hosted online via Zoom

For more information please email ans372@pitt.edu

 

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Rakie Cham headshot

Underlying Mechanisms of Balance and Gait Impairments A Focus on Special Populations: Low Vision and Autism

by Rakie Cham, PhD

Associate Professor of Bioengineering, Ophthalmology, Physical Therapy

Falls are a growing public and occupational health concern, particularly in special populations such as older adults and individuals affected by a physical, central or cognitive disability. Causes of falls are multifactorial and complex. Multidimensional approaches are needed to understand the problem of balance and gait impairments and how they impact an individual's quality of life. Such approaches are also needed to develop effective patient-centered interventions. In this presentation, I will first provide a description of our Human Movement and Balance Laboratory (HMBL) facilities. Then I will focus on our findings in this area in two clinical populations: adults with low vision conditions and adults with autism spectrum disorders. 

Apr. 8 at 10:00 AM

Hosted online via Zoom

For more information please email ans372@pitt.edu

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Mary Torregrossa headshot

Pathological Learning and Memory as a Core Feature of Substance Use Disorders and a Path Towards Novel Treatment

by Mary Torregrossa, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry

In this talk I will describe studies in my lab that have identified the circuits and cellular mechanisms responsible for encoding associative memories between environmental stimuli and cocaine use. I will describe how plasticity at synapses from the thalamus to the amygdala are strengthened during cocaine self-administration and how they can be weakened through the process of extinction learning or by using specific stimulation techniques. I will further discuss a potential role for dopamine in modifying cocaine-associated learning and how cocaine self- administration paradigms that promote habitual cocaine use patterns lead to a loss of amygdala control over cocaine seeking behavior. Overall, these studies provide insight into the circuits and mechanisms controlling drug use under different conditions and give insight into ways to use neurostimulation technology to target drug memories for the prevention of relapse in substance use disorders.

Mar. 18 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Marta Peciña headshot

Neuroimaging predictors of opioid modulation of antidepressant placebo effects

by Marta Peciña, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

Placebo effects represent an excellent opportunity to investigate the biological mechanism implicated in the processing of positive expectancies, associative learning, and social interactions. In this talk, I will describe the neural and molecular correlates through which placebos may impact mood, fatigue, or anxiety. In particular, I will show data that demonstrate the contribution of the opioid system in antidepressant lace effects and contextual processing.

Mar. 4 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Gildengers Ariel headsot

Clinical Cases in Geriatric Psychiatry

by Ariel Gildengers, MD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry

Dr. Ari Gildengers will review older adult patients from the Benedum Geriatrics Center. The cases will cover mood, anxiety, psychotic, and neurocognitive disorders and various treatment modalities. He will present patients highlighting the long-term course of mental illness as well as patients who develop mental illness in older age. Additionally, Dr. Gildengers will review the environment of care and community resources. Discussion of each case will be encouraged. 

Feb. 25 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Headshot of bistra iordanova

Sex-specific trajectories of Alzheimer's Disease

by Bistra lordanova, PhD

Assistant Professor of Bioengineering

Alzheimer's disease is the main dementia afflicting 5.8 million Americans and nearly two-thirds are women. Recent evidence shows diverging sex-specific trajectories of dementias, particularly after menopause, but the biological basis remains elusive. This lecture will deliver an integrative view on dynamic neurovascular coupling and brain metabolism in humans and animal models during aging. The central hypothesis is that vascular and metabolic dysfunctions interact with neuroendocrine regulators to drive brain pathology in a sex- specific manner. I will also introduce our multidisciplinary approach that combines MRI with optics and single-cell transcriptomics to relate functional aspects of neurovascular resilience to specific cell types and design personalized therapy. 

Feb. 11 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Headshot of Banihashemi Layla

How neural correlates of brain-body connections link childhood adversity and affective psychopathology

by Layla Banihashemi, PhD

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

Our goal is to test the central hypothesis that childhood adversity influences later stress reactivity and vulnerability to affective disorders via structural and/or functional changes in the neural correlates of brain-body connections. We examine these stress-responsive, cortico-extended amygdala-hypothalamic circuits using multimodal neuroimaging techniques in young adults with histories of childhood threat (e.g., abuse or traumatic events).

Dr. Banihashemi is interested in the study of early life experiences and the neurodevelopmental mechanisms, contributing to vulnerability to affective disorders. She is investigating childhood adversity and central visceral circuits as mechanisms of affective risk.

Dec. 17 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
KONASALE PRASAD HEADSHOT

Computational Network Analysis: A Window to Complexities of Network Disarray related to Psychotic disorders

by Konasale Prasad, MD, MBBS (MD)

Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Bioengineering

This presentation will provide an overview of a series of studies in our lab using different but related approaches to delineate network architecture and nature of dysfunction in psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia and risk for developing these disorders. Beginning with structural MRI-based network analyses, this presentation will demonstrate potential underlying white matter network alterations and dysfunctional network using functional MRI data. Since each modality of MRI provides data on one layer of the network, this series of studies will show how schizophrenia neurobiology can be viewed as a multilayer network problem and discuss challenges in analyzing such data.

Dr. Prasad is a nationally recognized researcher in the field of schizophrenia. Using cutting-edge PET and MRI methods, Dr. Prasad's research seeks to characterize molecular markers associated with neuroinflammation in schizophrenia. His findings have increased our understanding of pathophysiological processes underlying schizophrenia and contributed to the development of innovative treatments for patients diagnosed with this disorder.

Dec. 10 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Tamer Ibrahim headshot

Ultrahigh Field Human MRI at Pitt

by Tamer Ibrahim, PhD

Professor of Bioengineering, Radiology, and Psychiatry

As the usage of MRI for biomedical research increases, an ongoing goal for extending the usefulness of MRIs has been the increase of the magnet's field strength to 3 Tesla (T), 7T, and beyond. 7T imaging offers increased SNR and spatial/spectral resolution, which can provide significant boosts for characterizing both structural and functional cerebral integrity. As a result, the 7T field strength has recently been given FDA-approval for clinical use, due to its ability to characterize "smaller structures and subtle pathologies.” 7T imaging can still be however disadvantaged by physical and technical challenges including 1) safety concerns regarding exceeding radiofrequency (RF) power deposition in tissue, and 2) large image inhomogeneities that can vary between different subjects. Methodologies (hardware and software solutions) developed by Pitt's 7 Tesla Bioengineering Research Program (7TBRP) have alleviated many of these challenges resulting in an ultrahigh field human MRI that is robustly safe, efficient, and insensitive to variations in the individuals. The translation of these engineering solutions has made more than 30 active NIH projects rely on 7T MRI for all their neuroimaging needs. This presentation will glimpse into the technical challenges, the engineering solutions, and the translation of these solutions into large scale patient/disease studies at 7T.

Prof. Tamer Ibrahim is an electrical engineer by training (BS/MS/PhD) whose work has transformed translational ultrahigh field (UHF) human MRI research. His innovative imaging technologies and collaboration with a diverse group of scientists and clinicians have been the main catalyst for enabling UPitt to develop the most active and funded 7T MRI neuroimaging research program in the United States.

Nov. 19 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Mary Ganguli

Dementia for Engineers

by Mary Ganguli, MBSS (MD)

Professor of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, and Neurology

The presentation will address risk and protective factors for dementia and include ways in which engineers and engineering applications are involved in dementia research and dementia care. 

Dr. Ganguli focuses on the epidemiology of the aging brain and late life mental health disorders, particularly cognitive impairment and dementia. Her work has been continuously funded since 1986 by awards from the National Institute on Aging. Dr. Ganguli has published 135 peer reviewed papers in high impact journals including The Lancet, Neurology, Biological Psychiatry, and the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.

Nov. 12 at 10:00 AM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Pedersen headshot

Integrating environmental and individual factors to understand health inequities in alcohol

by Sarah Pedersen, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry & Psychology

This presentation will give an overview of Dr. Pedersen's line of research focused on understanding health inequities in alcohol problems. She will be presenting three separate studies that integrate widely studied predictors of alcohol problems that bridge both laboratory-based and naturalistic assessments.

Dr. Pedersen is a licensed clinical psychologist with a long-standing interest in treating and researching problematic substance use. Her primary research interests are focused on examining differences in how people experience the effects of alcohol in relation to decisions made while drinking and substance use behavior over time. She has integrated personality characteristics, environmental factors, and cognitions within this line of research to understand when and why people are at risk for alcohol problems.

Jul. 26 at 12:00 PM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Price Rebecca headshot

Unveiling and Targeting Neurocognitive Profiles in Anxiety and Depression: Towards Neuroplasticity-Based Intervention

by Rebecca Price, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Psychology

Neural and cognitive processing pattems have been found to distinguish groups of individuals with emotional disorders (eg, anxiety, depression from healthy samples, but translating such findings Into true advances in clinical care remains a challenge. Research in psychiatry increasingly emphasizes cross-cutting biopsychosocial factors that are heterogeneous within, and across, discrete psychiatric diagnoses. The promise of this work is that It will generate a process-based framework to improve psychiatric assessment and treatment. In this talk, I w discuss neurocognitive factos that may contbute to anxiety and depression across diagnoses with a focus on Impairments in cognitive flexbility and neuroplastidity. I will discuss ongoing attempts to translate such findings Into mechanistic treatment straegles and personalized treatment prescriptions cæable of remediating neurocognitive disruptions and allevaing symptoms. Specific areas of focus within this work include: 1) characterizing neurocognitive processing patterns in affective disorders through behavioral Information processing tasks and MRT 2) the targeted modification of cognitive processing mechanisms through computer- based training and 3) leveraging biological treatments intravenous ketamine, neuromodulation) to acutely enhance neuroplasticty and promote the uptake of adaptve learning.

Dr. Price's research focuses on identifying neurocognitive mechanisms of mood and anxiety disorders with the goal of translating that understanding into targeted interventions. Dr. Price has tested novel interventions for depression, suicidality and anxiety, including the first randomized controlled trial for the administration of kelamine for suicidal patients, the first studies to combine neuromodulatory and/or kelamine infusion with novel cognitive bias training computer tasks. 

Jun. 7 at 12:00 PM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Colleen McClung PhD

Translational studies of circadian rhythms and psychiatry

by Colleen McClung, PhD

Professor of Psychiatry and Clinical and Translational Science

The overall goal of our work is to understand the mechanisms that lead to psychiatric disorders with a particular interest in the role of the circadian clock in the manifestation and treatment of these disorders. I'll discuss our translational work in mice, rats and humans with a focus on how we use brain imaging and molecular data from human subjects to inform mechanistic studies in rodents (and vice versa). The hope is that these types of cross species studies will lead to the development of novel treatments for diseases like bipolar disorder and substance use disorders.

Dr. McClung is world leader in the study of how circadian genes and rhythms are involved in the development of substance abuse disorders. Her research has identified direct molecular mechanisms by which circadian proteins in cortico-limbic circuitry regulate neuronal activity and substance use-related behavior. 

May. 3 at 12:00 PM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark

Bioengineering in Psychiatry

Speaker Series presents

University of Pittsburgh

Department of Bioengineering
Swanson School of Engineering
Department of Psychiatry
School of Medicine

3d rendering of a brain with highlights
Lewis Davis Headshot

Mapping the neural circuitry basis for cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia

by David Lewis, MD

Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, Thomas Detre ; Professor of Academic Psychiatry, Chair, Department of Psychiatry

Deficits in cognitive control, the ability to adjust thoughts or behaviors in order to achieve goals, are now considered to be a core feature of schizophrenia and to be the best predictor of long-term functional outcome. Cognitive control depends on the coordinated activity of several brain regions, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). Subjects with schizophrenia exhibit altered activation of the DLPFC, and reduced power of frontal lobe gamma band (-40 Hz) oscillations, when performing tasks that require cognitive control. Gamma oscillations require robust activity in the reciprocal connections between the parvalbumin-containing basket cell class of cortical GABA neurons and neighboring pyramidal neurons. Thus, alterations in either the excitatory or inhibitory synapses in this circuit could contribute to impaired gamma oscillations and cognition in schizophrenia. This presentation will review the evidence for alterations in components of this circuit in the DLPFC of subjects with schizophrenia. Current findings converge on the hypothesis that the primary disturbances are in pyramidal neurons with the changes in parvalbumin neurons representing compensatory responses to maintain excitatory-inhibitory balance in DLPFC networks. In concert, the findings provide a circuity-based explanation for gamma oscillations impairments and cognitive disturbances in schizophrenia.

Dr. Lewis is an internationally recognized expert on schizophrenia. His research focuses on the neural circuitry of the prefrontal cortex and related brain regions and the alterations of this circuitry in schizophrenia.

Mar. 29 at 12:00 PM

univeristy of pittsburgh wordmark