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Understanding information-processing based mechanisms underlying cognitive decline in normal older adult and developing interventions
Taiwan (FMS-Taiwan) - National Taiwan University, Taipei
Graduate Institute of Brain and Mind Sciences
Joshua Goh Oon Soo
Chinese is not required, but would help significantly in interacting with human participants
Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
By the time dementia patients are identified at the clinic, substantial irreversible neurodegeneration and cognitive declines have occurred. Thus, preclinical intervention against age-related cognitive impairment is critical so that the effects of potential neuropathology are impeded. The challenge is in designing cognitive functional tasks that target information processing mechanisms that increase risk for age-related cognitive decline. In tandem with intervention development, the development of brain structural and functional imaging tools are also critical for pre-clinical diagnosis.
What is the aim of the project?
1. To design cognitive intervention approaches that specifically encourage modes of information processing that are protective against age-related cognitive impairment. 2. To develop brain-imaging indices that are sensitive to the above interventions and that dissociate individuals with normal cognitive prognosis from those with poor cognitive prognosis.
What techniques and methods are used?
Experimental approaches include psychological experimental design, neuropsychological testing, blood biochemistry data acquisition and statistical analysis, brain imaging (MRI). Skills preferred but not exclusionary if lacking include programming in R, Matlab, Python. Confidence in statistics is also helpful.
What is the role of the student?
- The tasks will be done under supervision
- The student will observe the practical experiments but will be highly involved in the analysis of the results
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
Students already familiar with this field will learn more specific knowledge on how the lab conducts experiments in this research topic of longitudinal cognitive aging. Students not familiar will gain exposure to basic dry computer lab and human cognitive testing operations.
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
We will not provide formal teaching for short duration interns, but we will provide on-the-spot guidance as necessary.
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- The student will prepare an abstract
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
Computer coding background including R, Matlab, Python, along with good knowledge of statistical testing, would be a plus but not necessary.
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts: - Medical students - Graduated students (less than 6 months) - Pre-Medical students from the American-British system - Students in biomedical fields
- Goh; J. O. S.*; Hung; H. Y.; Su; Y. S. (2018). A conceptual consideration of the free energy principle in cognitive maps: How cognitive maps reduce surprise. In Kara Federmeier (Ed.); Psychology of Learning; and Motivation; 69; 205-240.
- Tu; Y.Z.; Lin; D.W.; Suzuki; A.; Goh; J.O.S.* (2018). East Asian Young and Older Adult Perceptions of Emotional Faces From an Age- and Sex-Fair East Asian Facial Expression Database. Frontiers in Psychology; 9:2358; http://doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.02358.
- Su; Y. S.; Chen; J. T.; Tang; Y. J.; Yuan; S. Y.; McCarrey; A. C.; Goh; J. O. S.* (2018). Age-Related Differences in Striatal; Medial Temporal; and Frontal Involvement During Value-Based Decision Processing. Neurobiology of Aging; 69:185-198.
- Hsu; C. W.; Goh; J. O. S.* (2016). Distinct and overlapping brain areas engaged during value-based; mathematical; and emotional decision processing. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience; 275.
- Goh; J. O. S.*; Su; Y. S.; Tang; Y. J.; McCarrey; A. C.; Tereschenko; A.; Elkins; W.; Resnick; S. M. (2016). Frontal; striatal; and medial temporal sensitivity to value distinguishes risk-taking from risk-aversive older adults during decision-making. Journal of Neuroscience; 36(49); 12498-12509.
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