At the Neuropsychoimaging of Addiction and Related Conditions (NARC) Research Program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, we study human brain function related to behavior, cognition, emotion, and personality. We focus particular attention on drug addiction (such as crack/cocaine, methamphetamine, and alcohol), and other problem behaviors (including aggression and intermittent explosive disorder). We also research comorbid psychopathology (e.g., depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, antisocial personality). We develop and use cross-modality imaging techniques and sensitive behavioral and neuropsychological assays, creating translational capabilities.
NARC’s research is multidisciplinary and translational. We use multiple advanced techniques for sensitive, high-resolution neuroimaging studies. These studies look at brain anatomy and connectivity as well as cognitive processes measuring task-driven functional changes in brain regional activation and connectivity. We enjoy research-dedicated magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET), and electroencephalogram imaging systems. Using both well-established and novel MRI analyses, real-time neurofeedback and spectroscopy techniques, we examine functional changes including blood oxygen level dependent activation, glucose metabolism, receptor availability, and electrical conductivity non-invasively, as they are organized by the waking brain.
We anchor these results within a broader context particularly focused on examining inhibitory control and reward processing. Using specifically tailored cognitive neuroimaging paradigms enriched by neuropsychological assessment techniques, we investigate behavior and its outcomes. In addition, we acquire DNA and multiple genomic measures to investigate specific contributions of gene variations.