Ph.D. Yale University, Clinical Psychology
Department of Psychology
Hunter College, HN 627B
695 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10065
Current Research Areas
Our research focuses on how the brain and the visual system process affective information, and how these processes contribute to the onset and maintenance of stress states and disorders. We take a systems neuroscience approach to translational investigations of the interrelations of the neural circuitry and neuroendocrine cascades associated with stress.
We use a variety of methods, including computerized experimental tasks modified from vision science, eye-tracking, salivary immunoassay, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), to investigate the mechanisms underlying both normative and maladaptive affective processing. In particular, we pursue three related lines of research. First, we investigate the role of visual attentional processing in stress-related states and disorders using behavioral paradigms developed by vision scientists. Second, we investigate the phenomenology of post-traumatic stress, with particular emphasis on the re-experiencing and hyperarousal symptoms, using measurement methods that include stress hormone assay. Third, we use fMRI and DTI to investigate the neural systems involved in affective processing in stress states and disorders. We are working to integrate these lines into a program of research wherein we can utilize behavioral paradigms, neuroimaging, and immunoassay to map the systems and trajectories of pathological affective processing in stress states and disorders.
Moriguchi, Y., Negreira, A.M., Weierich, M.R., Dautoff, R., Wright, C.I., Dickerson, B.D., & Barrett, L.F. (2011). Differential hemodynamic response in affective circuitry with aging: An fMRI study of novelty, valence, and arousal. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. PMID: 20521849
Weierich, M.R., Wright, I.C., Negreira, A.M., Dickerson, B.C., & Barrett, L.F. (2010). Novelty as a dimension in the affective brain. Neuroimage, 49, 2871-2878.
Weierich, M.R., Treat, T.A., & Hollingworth, A. (2008). Theories and measurement of visual attentional processing in anxiety. Cognition and Emotion, 22, 985-1018.
Weierich, M.R., & Nock, M.K. (2008). Posttraumatic stress symptoms mediate the relationship between childhood sexual abuse and non-suicidal self-injury. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 76, 39-44.