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News: Mind, Brain And Emotion

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New Research Network to Measure and Promote Emotional Well-Being
March 16, 2021

The University of Wisconsin–Madison has received a $2.5 million four-year grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to establish a research network on the plasticity of well-being and to develop innovative measures of the key pillars of well-being. Faculty and experts from the Center for Healthy Minds are leading the effort.

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Research provides tools for achieving the “how” of well-being in daily life
December 7, 2020

Researchers at the Center for Healthy Minds introduce a new framework based on scientific evidence that suggests that well-being can be thought of as a set of skills that people can learn through practice in daily life.

Illustration Of Person On Phone Meditating
Researchers Launch Fully Mobile Study on Meditation and Depression
October 29, 2020

A team at the Center for Healthy Minds is starting new research to understand whether a mobile well-being app, the Healthy Minds Program, can improve depression for people living with the condition.

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Early Research Suggests Mindfulness Training Improves Mental Health Outcomes in Police Officers
December 16, 2019

A recent paper published by researchers at the Center for Healthy Minds showed that eight weeks of mindfulness training resulted in reductions in work-related stress, improvements in sleep quality, lower levels of burnout and reduced depression and anxiety in police officers.

Kids Playing Tenacity Game
Mindfulness video game changes areas of the brain associated with attention
December 13, 2019

A research team at the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and the University of California, Irvine, designed a video game to improve mindfulness and found that playing the game leads to changes in the brain areas underlying attention. 

Wooden Blocks With Emojis Representing Emotional Styles
New Emotional Style Questionnaire Shows Promise in Capturing Healthy Emotionality
September 3, 2019

The Center for Healthy Minds introduces a new measure that captures people's emotional style that shows promise as a valuable tool for research and clinical purposes. 

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Long-term Meditators May Be Perceived Differently by Strangers Than Those Who Don’t Meditate, Says New Study
August 28, 2019

New research from the Center points to evidence that long-term meditators may be perceived by strangers as less neurotic, more mindful, more conscientious and more comfortable in their own skin.

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Center Welcomes New Faculty Member Melissa Rosenkranz
August 21, 2019

The Center for Healthy Minds welcomes new faculty member Melissa Rosenkranz, who studies neural-immune and biochemical mechanisms by which individual differences in response to emotion alter resilience against disease, as well as the impact of meditation practice on these mechanisms.

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Mindfulness Not Straightforward for Reducing Impulsive Behaviors, Says New Study
August 19, 2019

New research from the Center suggests that mindfulness training in experienced meditators as well as in people new to meditation does not lower certain aspects of impulsivity.

Pushpins Connecting String To Depict Neural Connection In The Brain
Mindfulness Training Strengthens Connection Between Brain Networks for Attention Control and Mind-Wandering
August 13, 2019

New research from the Center shows that mindfulness training leads to improvement in networks in the brain that are important for attentional control of mind wandering

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Faith in action: Loka Initiative brings faith leaders and scientists together
July 23, 2019

The faithful are powered by belief; scientists demand proof. What if the two groups joined forces to protect the earth? That's the goal of the Loka Initiative

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Affective Neuroscience: 25 Years of Progress Studying Adversity, Resilience and Psychopathology
July 17, 2019

The 25th Wisconsin Symposium on Emotion was held in April 2019. We review the past 25 years of advances in the field of affective neuroscience

Older Child Sharing With A Younger Child
Kids’ Sharing Behaviors More Complex Than Previously Thought
July 2, 2019

New research points to evidence of increased cognitive complexity as children grow up that effects prosocial behavior

A Human Painted In Watercolor Holding A Hand Over Heart To Demonstrate The Link Between Stress In The Body And In The Mind
When Feelings of Stress Align with the Body, People Have Higher Levels of Well-Being
May 10, 2019

When stress levels in the mind and body are in sync, a person is more likely to have higher levels of well-being

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Expectant Mothers’ Mental Health May Shape Neural Highways in Infants’ Brains
August 27, 2018

Findings from the Center for Healthy Minds suggest that expectant mothers' mental health may influence the white matter development in the brain of her child

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Meditation Affects Brain Networks Differently in Long-Term Meditators and Novices
July 23, 2018

In one of the largest studies to date on the topic, research from the Center for Healthy Minds suggests that meditation affects the brains of long-term meditators and novices differently

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Training Your Compassion “Muscle” May Boost Brain’s Resilience in the Face of Suffering
May 22, 2018

Two weeks of compassion meditation training may reduce distress and improve a person’s ability to look at others who are suffering

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The Epigenetic Aging Clock Runs Slower in Meditators, Study Suggests
September 8, 2017

A new study is the first to suggest that the long-term practice of meditation may slow down the epigenetic clock in immune cells

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Scientists Find Area of the Brain Responsible for Emotional Spillover
June 16, 2017

Researchers are discovering what happens in the brain when emotional spillover occurs and, for the first time, are able to pinpoint areas directly responsible

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Healthy Minds Brief: Twin Research Suggests How Stress Shapes the Adolescent Brain
March 15, 2017

How do our experiences in childhood shape our brains and coping styles in adulthood?

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Telling the Tale of Midlife in the United States
January 25, 2017

Center for Healthy Minds researchers lead the neuroscience portion of MIDUS, a national longitudinal study on aging explicitly focused on midlife, including transitions from young adulthood to midlife, and from midlife into old age

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Meeting of the Minds
September 21, 2016

Center faculty member John Dunne fosters cross-disciplinary connections that lead to revolutionary research

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Mind Over Matter? Mapping the Two-Way Street of the Brain and Immune System
September 1, 2016

Center for Healthy Minds studies explore the influence of the brain on inflammatory diseases such as asthma

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Center for Healthy Minds Teams Up with Madison Police Department to Foster Officer Well-Being
August 23, 2016

A pilot study from the Center will explore the impact of mindfulness-based practices on officers’ physical and mental well-being

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Intensive Meditation Practices Linked to Slower Respiration Rate
August 15, 2016

How can long-term meditation practice - and especially intensive training - have a lasting impact on practitioners in their everyday lives?

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Raising Body Temperature Relieves Depression Symptoms, Small Study Finds
May 11, 2016

A study led by Center faculty member Charles Raison suggests that raising body temperature to the point of a mild fever reduces depression symptoms for up to 6 weeks following a single treatment

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Unique Trauma Calls for Unique Treatments – Backed by Neuroscience
April 28, 2016

Center scientists use brain imaging to reveal the complexity, range of response, and symptoms for individuals with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Jill Mc Dermott Meeting by David Nevala
UW–Madison Collaboration Promotes Well-Being in the Workplace
July 6, 2015

The Center for Healthy Minds partners with Wisconsin School of Business to bring their Cultivating Well-Being curriculum to the workplace

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Feeling the Happiness – Not Pain – of Others Predicts Helpful Behavior
February 24, 2015

Empathy with both positive and negative emotions may be equally effective in inspiring altruism

To Practice Mindfulness, Start by Counting Your Breaths
October 15, 2014

Research suggests breath counting may be one route to improving attention and well-being

Early Life Stress can Leave Lasting Impacts on the Brain
June 27, 2014

Scientists at the Center are exploring how stressors like poverty, neglect and physical abuse experienced in early life may alter critical areas of the brain later in life

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It’s Not All Wedded Bliss
April 25, 2014

Research suggests people who experience chronic marital stress are less able to savor positive experiences – a hallmark of depression

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Study Reveals Gene Expression Changes with Meditation
December 4, 2013

New research suggests mindfulness meditation may alter how genes are expressed in the body

Response and Recovery in the Brain May Predict Well-Being
February 4, 2013

How long the brain takes to recover from a threat may be an indicator of personality traits like neuroticism

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Mindfulness Meditation May Provide Relief From Chronic Inflammation
January 16, 2013

A Center study suggests mindfulness meditation may provide relief from chronic inflammation

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Early Stress May Sensitize Girls’ Brains for Later Anxiety
November 11, 2012

High levels of family stress in infancy are linked to differences in everyday brain function and anxiety in teenage girls

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A Wandering Mind Reveals Mental Processes and Priorities
March 15, 2012

What are the costs when our minds wander?

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Stress, Anxiety Both Boon and Bane to Brain
January 18, 2011

Stress from immediate threats may negatively affect our ability for more complex thinking

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Can Love Change Your Mind? New Project Explores Neuroscience of ‘Positive Qualities’
September 10, 2008

Grant from Fetzer Institute allows Davidson's lab to explore the impact of love, other positive qualities on the brain

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Study Shows Compassion Meditation Changes the Brain
March 25, 2008

Brain scans of practicing monks reveal impact on circuits used to detect emotions and feelings and others

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Clinical Depression Linked to Abnormal Emotional Brain Circuits
August 15, 2007

Center Founder Richard Davidson is senior author on a study examining differences in the neural circuits responsible for emotional regulation in depressed individuals

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Brain Scans Show Meditation Changes Minds, Increases Attention
June 25, 2007

Center Founder Richard Davidson, researchers find meditation increases activity in brain regions associated with attention, decision-making

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Meditation May Fine-Tune Control Over Attention
May 8, 2007

Center Founder Richard Davidson, research group find meditation may have lasting impact on brain's ability to regulate attention

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Brain’s ‘Fear Center’ May Underlie Autistic Behaviors
December 12, 2006

Center Founder Richard Davidson is the senior author of paper on the link between the size of the amygdala and social deficits associated with autism

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UW Scientist Among 100 Most Influential People of 2006
April 30, 2006

Center for Healthy Minds Founder Richard Davidson recognized as part of TIME Magazine's annual list of the most influential people in the world

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Study: Eye Contact Triggers Threat Signals in Autistic Children’s Brains
March 7, 2005

Center Founder Richard Davidson is senior author of a study revealing the over-activation of the brain's emotion processing center associated with negative feelings in children with autism

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Study: Meditation Changes the Brain’s Electrical Pattern
October 16, 2004

Study led by Center Founder Richard Davidson comparing brain-oscillation patterns shows higher frequency in brains of long-term Buddhist meditation practitioners than novice students in both meditative and resting states.

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$10.7 Million Grant to Help Unlock What Regulates Emotion
February 19, 2004

Center for Healthy Minds Founder Richard Davidson to direct research on emotional resiliency under 5-year National Institutes of Mental Health grant awarded to group of UW–Madison researchers

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Study Shows Brain Activity Influences Immune Function
September 2, 2003

Center Founder Richard Davidson is the senior author of a study exploring possible direct link between increased activity in the brain region associated with positive affect and an increase in immune system response

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Brain Images Reveal Effects of Antidepressants
February 6, 2003

Center founder Richard Davidson and collaborator Ned Kalin examine the effects of antidepressants on the brain

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Meditation Produces Positive Changes in the Brain
February 6, 2003

Center Founder Richard Davidson leads study that finds lasting changes in brain, immune system due to participation in short mindfulness meditation program

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Brain Images Reveal Effects of Antidepressants
February 6, 2003

Center Founder Richard Davidson is co-author of a study on brain activity in clinically depressed individuals that could be used to predetermine the effectiveness of antideppressants

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The Dalai Lama and Scientists Unite to Study Meditation
May 23, 2001

Center Founder Richard Davidson, Dalai Lama, scientists and researchers gather on UW–Madison campus to discuss collaboration, continued scientific research on meditation

Dalai Lama Visits Brain Imaging Facility
May 21, 2001

At the invitation of Center Founder Richard Davidson, His Holiness the Dalai Lama visits the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus; tours W. M. Keck Laboratory for Functional Brain Imaging and Behavior and attends conference of leading contemplative studies scientists.

Dalai Lama Olin L10 2802 by Jeff Miller
Dalai Lama Coming to UW to Probe Science of Emotions
April 17, 2001

His Holiness the Dalai Lama to visit brain imaging laboratory and attend Transformations of Mind, Brain and Emotion conference on UW-Madison campus at invitation of Center Founder Richard Davidson

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Brain Study Sheds Light on Impulsive Violence
July 27, 2000

Study finds breakdown in emotion regulation may lead to impulsive acts of violence

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Emotion Symposium Set for April 13-14
April 10, 2000

Center for Healthy Minds Founder Richard Davidson is a speaker at UW-Madison's 6th annual Wisconsin Symposium on Emotion

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Mind-Body Research Highlights
September 29, 1999

Richard Davidson oversees study exploring differences in brain circuitry and the resulting physiological and emotional responses due to stress in older women

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UW Research Effort Bringing Emotions into Focus
November 25, 1998

Richard Davidson leading the way for new generation of researchers studying the scientific interplay between emotions and biology