Emotional reactivity, the negative response to stress, is a rare predictor of relapse risk following recovery from MDD. ‘Trait’ mindfulness, the tendency to non-judgmentally engage with experience, has been linked to lower levels of emotional reactivity in a community sample, and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) has shown initial promise in reducing the risk of depressive relapse in clinical populations. The proposed research will investigate how mindfulness training affects emotional reactivity, using an established, behaviorally-driven attentional control task and a functional neuroimaging approach. The study involves comparing reactions to sadness-evoking film clips relative to neutral film clips, and looking at the consequences of this mood induction on the ability to ignore sad and neutral faces during indoor/outdoor place judgment task. This paradigm has the potential to uncover basic attentional influences of mindfulness on emotion processing, and may thereby generate important hypotheses for mechanisms of prophylaxis against depressive relapse.

Norman Farb, PhD

University of Toronto Mississauga

Fellow, Grantee

Norman Farb is an assistant professor in psychology at the University of Toronto Mississauga, where he directs the Regulatory and Affective Dynamics laboratory (www.radlab.zone). A Fellow at the Mind & … MORE

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