Althoff Lab Research

Area of interest

  • Childhood bipolar disorder, ADHD, depression, statistical genetics, and environmental contributions to autistic spectrum symptoms.

Child Behavior Checklist-Dysregulation Profile: Genes, Environment, Life Course

This proposal describes a 5 year mentored training program to develop a research career in child and Adolescent Psychiatry; Research will focuus on the CBCL-Dysregulation Profiles as a masure of mood instability, attention problesm, and aggression that is often seen in child and adoelscent pscyhiatry clinics, but poorly studies and understood

Role: Principal Investigator

Stare-in-the Crowd Effect: Eye tracking and physiological response

A face that is looking directly at us stands out more prominently than the other faces in a crowd; this phenomenon is called the stare-in-a-crowd effect. Initially, the ability to pick out these self-directed faces played an evolutionary role. Quick identification of faces allows us to determine if another being is looking at us and whether or not they are a threat (Senju et al 2005). In our world today, the ability to detect direct gaze plays an important role in social awareness (von Grunau 1995). In particular, identifying direct gaze is important to understand how another individual is feeling (Baron-Cohen 1995) and to recognize their facial expression (Pelphrey et al 2002). Speed in identifying gaze direction is still important; once a person recognizes that a face is directed at them, they allocate more cognitive resources to detecting information about this other person (Conty et al 2007). With the importance of direct gaze detection already established, this study will employ advanced eye tracking technology to look at this effect in situations that more closely simulate real social situations. Much of the field uses photos of individuals for this research; the proposed study will use stimulus photographs of groups of people. Additionally, the eye tracking technology will allow us to manipulate the stimulus photographs in reaction to where a subject is looking.

Klingestion Third Generation Foundation. "Donald J. Cohen Medical Student Training Program"

The goals of the program, in keeping with the mission of the Department of Psychiatry and the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry within the Vermont Center for Children, Youth, and Families:

  1. to create positive mentoring relationships between medical students and child psychiatrists
  2. to teach empirically-based and family-centered assessment
  3. to encourage students to consider a career in child and adolescent psychiatry