Dr. Hazlett’s multidisciplinary research utilizes neuroimaging and other psychophysiological measures to study normal and disordered cognition and emotion. Her laboratory’s multi-measure approach employs functional brain imaging (e.g., functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)) together with more basic psychophysiological measures (e.g., skin conductance responsivity and modulation of the startle eyeblink response) to investigate and characterize attentional and affective information-processing deficits in schizophrenia-spectrum disorders (e.g., schizophrenia, schizotypal personality disorder). Functional brain imaging allows a window onto the brain’s activity while the more basic psychophysiological measures allow superior temporal resolution (in milliseconds) to examine the magnitude and time course of the cognitive- and emotion-processing deficits observed in patients with schizophrenia-spectrum illnesses.

Dr. Hazlett is particularly interested in individual differences in attentional and emotional information processing that might predict treatment response. Dr. Hazlett and her team are currently working on two federally-funded studies in this area: (1) a four-year study funded by a VA Merit Award that uses a fMRI measure of the function of the caudate nucleus (a brain region rich in dopamine) and a psychophysiological measure of sensorimotor gating (startle eyeblink modulation) as potential predictors of risperidone treatment response in schizophrenia patients; (2) a three-year study funded by the Department of Defense that employs a psychophysiological measure (affective modulation of the startle response) to examine emotion dysregulation in Veterans at high and low risk for suicide.

Dr. Hazlett’s other research interests involve the use of fMRI and affective startle eyeblink responses to examine emotion regulation in borderline personality disorder. Finally, Dr. Hazlett has a long-standing interest in the clinical symptom and cognitive correlates of structural MRI abnormalities in the schizophrenia spectrum.

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Cognitive Psychophysiology Laboratory
Department of Psychiatry
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center (MIRECC)
James J. Peters VA Medical Center (Mount Sinai affiliate)
Bronx, NY