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Cassandra Gould van Praag

Postdoctoral Research Assistant, Psychopharmacology and Emotion

The main focus of my role is providing support for existing and new projects within the Experimental Medicine theme, aimed at investigating the mechanisms of established and novel treatments for mood disorders. Key methods include cognitive neuroscience, functional brain imaging (fMRI) and biomarker approaches, using both patient groups and healthy volunteer studies.

Prior to joining Oxford, I undertook postdoctoral research with Prof. Hugo Critchley at Brighton and Sussex Medical School (, where I used MRI, experimental psychology and physiological monitoring to investigate the role of physiological arousal in cognitive and emotional processing, along with the impact of interoceptive abilities in modulating arousal-based processing in psychiatric disorders such as anxiety and schizophrenia.

I completed my PhD in Informatics in 2013 under the supervision of Prof. Anil Seth at the University of Sussex (, where I investigated individual differences in synaesthesia using MRI and extensive exploration of the first person experience. I completed an MSc in Cognitive Neuropsychology under the supervision of Prof. Geraint Rees at UCL (, and a BSc in Biological Sciences (genetics and immunology) from the University of Brighton.