GREGORY P. STRAUSS
Assistant Professor of Psychology
Internship: University of Illinois- Chicago, Department of Psychiatry
Post-doctoral Fellowship: University of Maryland School of Medicine
Areas: Clinical Psychology, Cognitive Psychology
Office: Clearview Hall, 52; Lab: Clearview Hall, 69
Lab Website: Translational Affective Neuroscience Laboratory
Editorial board: Schizophrenia Bulletin. Professional roles: Chair of the Program Committee of the National Academy of Neuropsychology (Program Chair, NAN 2014 meeting), member of the Publication Committee for the National Academy of Neuropsychology, Representative to the Federation of Associations in Behavioral & Brain Sciences (FABBS) for the Society for Research in Psychopathology. Professional memberships include: The Society for Research in Psychopathology, National Academy of Neuropsychology, and American Psychological Association.
Schizophrenia; emotion regulation; the interaction between cognition and emotion; social cognition
Dr. Strauss is director of the Translational Affective Neuroscience (TAN) Laboratory at Binghamton University. The overarching goal of the TAN Lab is to conduct inter-disciplinary research on basic emotional processes in clinical and non-clinical populations, and to use the knowledge gained from these studies to inform the development of novel psychosocial interventions designed to enhance social outcomes. This type of work is considered translational research, as it aims to translate basic research findings into clinical practice.
Dr. Strauss' research primarily examines different facets of emotion and cognition in individuals with schizophrenia. These studies use a combination of methods from the field of cognitive neuroscience, such as EEG/ERP, eye-tracking, and psychophysiological measurement (e.g., heart rate, skin conductance). Examples of recent or current studies examining affective processes in individuals with schizophrenia include: 1) The role of cognition-emotion interactions in anhedonia (e.g., attention, long-term memory); 2) Determining whether individuals with schizophrenia display an emotion regulation abnormality at the neurophysiological level when applying different regulation strategies (e.g., reappraisal, attentional control) to decrease negative affect, and whether specific cognitive processes (e.g., cognitive control) predict emotion regulation success; 3) neurocognitive predictors of anticipatory and retrospective reports of pleasure and the symptom of anhedonia using real-world experience sampling techniques; and 4) whether plasma oxytocin levels and the oxytocin receptor gene are associated with deficits in social cognition and emotion processing. We are also interested in the assessment and treatment of negative symptoms of schizophrenia (e.g., anhedonia, avolition, asociality). In a series of collaborative studies with our colleague Brian Kirkpatrick, we have developed and validated a next-generation negative symptom clinical rating instrument designed for use in clinical trials and experimental psychopathology studies, the Brief Negative Symptom Scale (BNSS). We are also exploring the utility of mobile technology in the assessment of negative symptoms, and developing a novel psychosocial intervention for anhedonia.
In addition, Dr. Strauss studies emotion in healthy individuals without a clinical diagnosis. Current studies examining healthy individuals primarily investigate different aspects of "emotion regulation". Emotion regulation refers to the processes by which we modify our negative and positive emotions with regard to their intensity, when they occur, how long they last, and how they are expressed. We are particularly interested in the neurophysiological, cognitive, and social cognitive processes that facilitate emotion regulation success when individuals apply different strategies, such as reappraisal, attentional control, distraction, and expressive suppression. We are also investigating social emotion regulation at the neurophysiological level and developing a computerized emotion regulation retraining and intervention program. These studies on emotion regulation in healthy individuals inform our research on schizophrenia.
Philosophy of Graduate Training:
Mentoring students is a very rewarding aspect of being a faculty member. I consider graduate students junior colleagues and enjoy working closely with them to facilitate multiple aspects of their professional development. My ultimate goal as a mentor is to prepare my graduate students to pursue their chosen career paths in Psychology. As part of this process, I encourage my students to develop a sound theoretical knowledge base in our area of work, gain methodological expertise in the use of cognitive neuroscience methods (e.g., ERP, eye-tracking), build basic research skills (e.g., programming, writing, statistics), and develop strong clinical abilities that will facilitate their clinical research and practice (e.g., diagnostic and symptom interviewing, neuropsychology). I emphasize the importance of developing a niche area and help my students plan and design a series of independent studies that build upon one another, with the goal of creating their own independent program of research. I also invest time in the professional development of my students via regular meetings to discuss strategies for success at different stages of academic and clinical psychology careers, and by encouraging them to attend scientific meetings where they can present research and make connections with others in the field. Students who plan to pursue a career in research will be a strong fit for this lab.
Strauss, G.P., Kappenman, E.S., Culbreth, A.J., Catalano, L.T., Lee, B.G., Gold, J.M. (2013). Emotion Regulation Abnormalities in Schizophrenia: Cognitive Change Strategies Fail to Decrease the Neural Response to Unpleasant Stimuli. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 39, 872-883.
Strauss, G.P., Catalano, L.T., Llerena, K., Gold, J.M. (2013). The Processing of Emotional Stimuli during Periods of Limited Attentional Resources in Schizophrenia. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 122, 492-505.
Strauss, G.P., & Gold, J.M. (2012). A New Perspective on Anhedonia in Schizophrenia. American Journal of Psychiatry, 169, 364-373.
Strauss, G.P., Frank, M.F., Waltz, J.A., Kasanova, Z., Herbener, E.S., Gold, J.M. (2011). Deficits in Positive Reinforcement Learning and Uncertainty-Driven Exploration are Associated with Distinct Aspects of Negative Symptoms in Schizophrenia. Biological Psychiatry, 69, 424-431.