Dr. Travis Todd Awarded NIH Grant to Study Fear Reduction

Travis Todd, a Research Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences, has received a four-year K01 research grant through the National Institute of Mental Health. The research will utilize cutting edge neurophysiological methods to investigate how fear and fear reduction are encoded within the brain. The research is highly relevant to public health, since fear-related disorders are among the most prevalent forms of mental illness and cost billions of dollars to  treat each year. Dr. Todd’s experiments will focus specially on neural encoding of fear and safety signals in the retrosplenial cortex, a brain region that undergoes pathological changes associated with PTSD, bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia, and Alzheimer’s disease.

K01 research grants are highly competitive and awarded to promising scientists who are seeking experience with a new research technique to eventually incorporate into their independent research program.  In addition, they require top-notch mentoring teams. Dr. Todd’s research will be overseen by a group of distinguished scientists within the PBS department. Professor David Bucci will head the mentoring team, which is comprised of Professors Jeffrey Taube, Kyle Smith, and Matthijs van der Meer. Dr. Todd’s research will also be guided by an external team of preeminent neuroscientists, including Dr. Rebecca Burwell (Brown University). Dr. Burwell will be visiting Dartmouth on November 16th to deliver this year’s Leaton Lecture in Behavioral Neuroscience in the Psychological and Brain Science Department.