I'm a tenure-track Investigator at the NIH, and Chief of the Section on Affective Neuroscience and Pain, part of the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health's new intramural program on pain and pain modulation. Prior to coming to NIH, I completed my PhD in Psychology at Columbia University under the mentorship of Tor Wager, where I focused on the brain mechanisms underlying expectancy effects on pain.  I was a post-doctoral fellow at NYU in the laboratory of Elizabeth Phelps, where I combined computational models, psychophysiological measurements, and neuroimaging to understand how expectations and instructed knowledge shape aversive learning during fear conditioning.

In general, my research focuses on understanding how expectations shape affective experience across domains, and whether expectancy-based processing is altered in specific patient populations. I combine human brain imaging, psychophysiological measures, pharmacological manipulations, and behavioral outcomes to isolate the mechanisms by which beliefs about pain, emotion, value, and treatments influence conscious experience. 

If you are interested in joining the Section on Affective Neuroscience and Pain as a trainee (postdoctoral fellow, post-baccalaureate research assistant, or graduate student), please contact me!

Please note: I rarely update this website, which reflects my personal beliefs and work, not that of the US government. 

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Lauren Y. Atlas, PhD