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Hampson Lab


Our lab does functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of neuropsychiatric populations, as well fMRI studies of healthy control subjects. A major focus at present in our lab is the use of real-time fMRI neurofeedback to treat and study mental illness. We use this form of neurofeedback to train people to control a specific aspect of their brain function. For example, we are beginning a new study training adolescents with Tourette syndrome (or chronic tic disorder) to control activity in their supplementary motor area to see if better control over neural activity in this region can result in improved control over tic symptoms.

We are also involved in developing neurofeedback interventions for post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, and obsessive compulsive disorder. Typically, one of our studies will involve two or three sessions of fMRI neurofeedback and two or three additional fMRI sessions that are used to monitor changes in brain activity patterns. The primary aim of this work is to develop neurofeedback as an intervention for improving neuropsychiatric symptoms. In addition, our neurofeedback studies examine how changes in brain function over the course of neurofeedback training relate to symptom improvements, which can provide insights into the neurobiological substrates giving rise to symptoms.

The Hampson Lab is led by Michelle Hampson, PhD, Assistant Professor of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, Psychiatry, Biomedical Engineering, and the Child Study Center.

Participant Eligibility/Benefits

Most of our studies involve MRI scans. We are beginning a new neurofeedback study for adolescents with Tourette Syndrome ages 10-16.

Research Interest

New ways of imaging human brain function to study and treat mental illness.

IRB Study Title

Neurofeedback from the supplementary motor area for Tourette Syndrome (HIC #0206017435)

Research Team

Collaborating Yale Faculty

  • Professor in the Child Study Center; Director and Co-Founder of the Pediatric Depression Clinic, Child Study Center; Co-Director of the T32 Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Childhood Neuropsychiatric Disorders, Child Study Center; Associate Program Director, Albert J. Solnit Integrated Training Program, Child Study Center; Co-Director of the Tic and OCD Program, Child Study Center

  • Emily Fraser Beede Professor of Child Psychiatry; Director, Social and Affective Neuroscience of Autism Program, Child Study Center; Director, Yale Toddler Developmental Disabilities Clinic

  • Professor of Psychiatry and of Psychology; Director, PTSD Advanced Fellowship in Mental Illness Research and Treatment; Deputy Director, Evaluation Division at the National Center for PTSD

  • Robert L. McNeil, Jr. Professor of Translational Research and Professor of Psychiatry, of Neuroscience, and of Psychology; Co-Director, Yale Center for Clinical Investigation; Chair, Psychiatry; Physician-in-Chief of Psychiatry, Yale New Haven Hospital; Director: NIAAA Center for the Translational Neuroscience of Alcoholism; Director, Clinical Neuroscience Division, VA National Center for PTSD

  • Arnold Gesell Professor of Child Psychiatry, Pediatrics and Psychology in the Yale Child Study Center; Chair, Child Study Center

  • Elizabeth Mears and House Jameson Professor of Psychiatry; Deputy Chair for Translational Research, Psychiatry; Director, Clinical Neuroscience Research Unit, Psychiatry; Director, Yale Program for Psychedelic Science, Psychiatry; Director, Yale Center for Brain and Mind Health, Yale School of Medicine; Director, Yale OCD Research Clinic, Psychiatry; Director, Neuroscience Research Training Program, Yale Department of Psychiatry

  • Steven M. Southwick Professor of Psychiatry and Professor in the Child Study Center and of Neuroscience; Director, Center of Excellence in Gambling Research; Director, Yale Program for Research on Impulsivity and Impulse Control Disorders; Director, Women and Addictive Disorders, Women's Health Research at Yale