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Center for Affective Neuroscience of Depression and Anxiety (CANDA)

Anxiety and depression are among the most common, costly, and impairing mental disorders. These conditions are increasingly    understood in terms of fundamental disruptions of core neural systems related to emotion. Emerging evidence links depression and    anxiety to abnormal sensitivity to reward and threat, respectively.  Multiple neuroimaging methods are being leveraged to identify    biomarkers of reward and threat that can predict both the course of the disorder and response to pharmacological and psychosocial    treatments to determine what treatment works best for whom. Emotion-related neural    circuitry is also studied in genetically modified animal models. Such studies can lead to    the identification of abnormalities in brain function and, ultimately, into new therapies    and testable models for human anxiety and depression.

 However, these dialogues and connections often take place in different research    centers and non-human animal research takes years to inform and impact experiments    relevant to individuals suffering with anxiety and depression. The Center for Affective    Neuroscience of Depression and Anxiety (CANDA) is a new  multi-disciplinary group of    scholars at Stony Brook University who work together on anxiety and depression –    combining basic research in human affective neuroscience, psychopathology and    treatment with animal models of these disorders. CANDA solidifies and extends existing    expertise across the following disciplines: psychology, psychiatry, and neurobiology.    Mutually-informative projects are conducted simultaneously across laboratories and    results in one laboratory rapidly impacting research being conducted in others. Novel    ideas, approaches, and projects result from this multi-disciplinary synergy.

CANDA is led by a three-person Executive Committee, consisting of Dan Klein, PhD, Distinguished Professor, Clinical Psychology, Ramin Parsey, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry; Della Pietra Family Chair in Biomedical Imaging; Director, PET Research; Co-Director, Neurosciences Institute; and Alfredo Fontanini, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior; Co-Director, Neurosciences Institute. By leveraging the significant existing strengths in each of the three lead departments, CANDA intends to be world-class center for translational research on the etiology, pathophysiology, and treatment of depressive and anxiety disorders.

 Current studies include:

Impact of Puberty on Affect & Neural Development across Adolescence (iPANDA) (A research study for adolescent girls and their parents)

Stony Brook Temperment Study

Imaging Opportunities