Experiment

Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Research Group

A multidisciplinary and collaborative team

Understanding the mechanisms underlying cognitive and emotional behaviour and the disruption of these processes by drugs, ageing, atypical development or disease.

The Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Research Group comprises academics, post-docs and postgraduates with research backgrounds in cognitive psychology, psychophysiology, psychopharmacology and neuroscience.

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This video shows a microneurography experiment with Francis McGlone; the electrodes are recording from within the lateral cutaneous nerve of the forearm while the participant is awake, comfortable and fully responsive. The activity of a single hair unit can be seen and heard in response to the brush strokes delivered by a Robotic Tactile Stimulator (RTS). The group has the only active microneurography lab in the UK. They use this unique technique to investigate the peripheral nerve activity behind social touch and pain and its relationship to conscious perceptual experience.

Expertise

We share a common interest in understanding the mechanisms underlying cognitive and emotional behaviour and the disruption of these processes by drugs, ageing, atypical development or disease. Our experimental approach combines neuroimaging, electrophysiology (EEG and microneurography), pharmacological and physiological techniques with behavioural testing procedures, thus encompassing multiple levels of analysis.

Collaborations

We collaborate with researchers across LJMU from pharmacy, computing, sports science and public health on multidisciplinary projects with an applied focus. In addition, we have strong collaborative links, both nationally and internationally, with other universities, charities and industrial partners.

Our research is funded by:

  • The European Union
  • The Leverhulme Trust
  • Medical Research Council
  • Pain Relief Foundation
  • BIAL Foundation
  • Mersey Care NHS Trust
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Unilever

Teaching and learning

All staff in the group contribute to teaching modules on the BSc (Hons) Applied Psychology programme (cognitive neuroscience, appetitive behaviour, social cognition and substance use modules) and some to the BSc (Hons) Animal Behaviour or Health Psychology (MSc) programme.

Facilities

Our research is conducted within modern laboratories housed within the Tom Reilly Building.  We have a specialist laboratory equipped for somatosensory psychophysics with a Medoc Pathway Pain & Thermal Sensory Evaluation System. We are also one of the first laboratories in the UK to have a microneurography capability. Our psychophysiology laboratories house a Faraday Cage, along with 128, 64 and 32 channel EEG systems. In addition, we have fNIRS, EMG, ECG capabilities.

Group members have a long-term association with the Sir Peter Mansfield Magnetic Resonance Centre, University of Nottingham (which houses an ultra-high-field 7T fMRI) as well as the Magnetic Resonance and Image Analysis Research Centre (MARIARC) at the University of Liverpool.

Find out more about our facilities

People

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PhD students

Meet the PhD students within this research area.


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Publications

Search for a research paper

8 papers found

  • Journal article

    A Quantitative Sensory Testing Approach to Pain in Autism Spectrum Disorders.

    Vaughan S, McGlone F and Poole H and Moore DJ

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    A touching Sight: EEG/ERP correlates for the vicarious processing of affectionate touch

    Schirmer A and McGlone F

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    Effects of MDMA on attention to positive social cues and pleasantness of affective touch.

    Bershad AK, Mayo LM, Van Hedger K, McGlone F and Walker SC and de Wit H

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    Predicting Early Mild Cognitive Impairment With Free Recall: The Primacy of Primacy.

    Talamonti D, Koscik R and Johnson S and Bruno D

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    Short-term mindful breath awareness training improves inhibitory control and response monitoring

    Pozuelos JP, Mead BR and Rueda MR and Malinowski P

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    The role of mindfulness in physical activity: A systematic review

    Schneider J, Malinowski P and Watson P and Lattimore P

    Publish date:2019