Dr Anna Powell

School of Psychology

Dr Anna Powell is a Research Fellow in the School of Psychology at Liverpool John Moores University. Dr Powell co-founded the research group “AlcoLab” along with other LJMU researchers interested in conducting research on the drivers and effects of alcohol use. This group meets informally once a month to discuss their research, grant applications, influential papers within the field, and barriers to / issues to consider when conducting alcohol research.

Dr Powell’s PhD research investigated the relationship between alcohol use and cognitive function, in different contexts. A systematic review examined longitudinal recoverability of cognitive function during abstinence in individuals with an alcohol use disorder, followed by a series of studies that assessed subjective executive function and vibrotactile reaction time in a range of dependent and non-dependent drinkers. Overall, the results showed that 1) cognitive function in several areas can recover in individuals with an alcohol use disorder who maintain abstinence, 2) hazardous drinkers experience poorer subjective executive function, but 3) perform faster during choice reaction time, and 4) impaired choice reaction time is demonstrated during early abstinence in dependent drinkers compared to controls, as is worsening mental fatigue, specifically in outpatients. These results have implications for health providers and policymakers, as hazardous drinkers are subject to alcohol harms despite not being a clinically prioritised group, while outpatients, despite typically fewer complex needs, are experiencing potentially harmful effects of cognitive exertion, so may need more support within their treatment pathway.

Since this time, Dr Powell’s work has expanded to understanding the experiences of other marginalised groups. Indeed, in her current role as a Research Fellow, she is qualitatively investigating the experience of ethnically diverse communities in relation to seasonal influenza vaccinations.

Degrees

2023, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, PhD Psychology and Neuroscience
2018, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, MSc Health Psychology (Distinction)
2015, Bangor University, United Kingdom, BSc Psychology (First-class Hons)

Academic appointments

Research Fellow, School of Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, 2023 - present
Research Assistant, School of Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, 2023 - 2023
Teaching Assistant, School of Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, 2020 - present
Research Project Support Officer, Psychology, Bangor University, 2016 - 2017
Research Intern, Psychology, Bangor University, 2014 - 2015

Journal article

Powell A, Sumnall H, Smith J, Kuiper R, Montgomery C. 2024. Recovery of neuropsychological function following abstinence from alcohol in adults diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder: Systematic review of longitudinal studies Manippa V. PLoS One, 19 :1-29 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Powell A, Sumnall H, Montgomery C. 2023. Younger, drunk, and fast: Paradoxical rapid reaction time in hazardous drinkers. Journal of psychopharmacology (Oxford, England), :2698811231177216 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Powell A, Sumnall H, Smith J, Kuiper R, Montgomery C. 2022. Recovery of neuropsychological function following abstinence from alcohol in adults diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder: Protocol for a systematic review of longitudinal studies PLoS One, 17 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Powell AK, Sumnall H, Kullu C, Owens L, Montgomery C. 2021. Subjective executive function deficits in hazardous alcohol drinkers. Journal of Psychopharmacology, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Powell A, Tommerdahl M, Abbasi Y, Sumnall H, Montgomery C. 2021. A pilot study assessing the brain gauge as an indicator of cognitive recovery in alcohol dependence Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical and Experimental, 36 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Thesis/Dissertation

Powell A. 2023. Alcohol use and cognition: Processing speed and subjective executive function deficits across the spectrum of drinking behaviours Montgomery C, Sumnall H, Owens L, Kullu C. Public Url

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