Joan Kaufman PhD
Associate Professor of Psychiatry and in the Child Study Center; Co-Director, Zigler Center Child Welfare Unit
Child Abuse and Neglect; Risk and Resilience; Psychiatric Diagnoses.
The Child and Adolescent Research and Education (CARE) Program focuses on two areas of investigation: 1) Studies in support of the National Institute of Mental Health’s Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) initiative which aims to develop the necessary database to derive a new psychiatric nomenclature informed by neuroscience, genetics, and psychology; and 2) Research on risk and resilience in maltreated children. These two lines of research are synergistic and interrelated, with the study of maltreated children having a number of advantages for the RDoC project, including: the study of a subset of patients that are frequently treatment resistant to standard clinical interventions; examination of a relatively homogenous sample with the onset of psychopathology proposed to be associated with stress-related mechanisms; and well-established relevant animal models to facilitate translational research.
We utilize clinical assessment, neuroimaging (e.g., structural, fMRI fear conditioning paradigm, resting state connectivity), and genetics (e.g., polymorphisms, epigenetic markers) research methods, with many of the clinical assessments we obtain collected at a day camp devised specifically for our research purposes.