2 February 2022: Understanding and Treating Learning Dysfunctions in Anxiety

Vanessa Brown
Department of Psychiatry
University of Pittsburgh

Depression and anxiety disorders are characterized by difficulties navigating rewarding and punishing experiences. Although experimental evidence for disrupted reward and punishment processing in these disorders is substantial and serve as targets for interventions like cognitive behavioral therapy, it’s still unclear what dysfunctions exist, how they relate to specific presentations and symptoms in these disorders, and how treatment affects these dysfunctions. I will present data using reinforcement learning and symptom clusters to show what learning dysfunctions are present and how they relate to symptoms. Then, I will present results and theorized relationships between current & potential treatments and effects on learning in these disorders.

View this recorded session here.