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Behind Your Behavior

Behind Your Behavior

By The Lullas
Roshni & Tina dive into the nuances of human behavior in this series of podcasts. In this interview-style podcast, the cousins explore concepts ranging from social interactions to decision-making, often bringing in professionals to provide their expertise. Roshni has a background in neuroscience, and hopes to pursue a PhD studying emotional decision making. Tina is in her fourth year of medical school and is interested in healthcare management and policy. Together, they hope to help us all better understand ourselves and provide some insight on the science behind your behavior.
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Aesthetics in the Brain

Behind Your Behavior

Season One: Looking Back
Join Tina and Roshni as they close out Season One! The cousins discuss their research backgrounds, reflect on the season and their amazing guests, and give a sneak peak of what’s coming next. Be sure to follow along on twitter and instagram (@TheBYBPodcast) to share your thoughts on this past season and what you want to hear in the future! We may have merchandise coming out soon as well, so don't miss out! Thanks for listening!
December 17, 2020
Phenylketonuria & Child Development
This episode explores Phenylketonuria & Child Development, with our guest Dr. Adele Diamond. We discuss her previous discoveries regarding the disease PKU, research on children with ADHD, as well as her current work exploring three core executive functions.  Episode Notes: Piaget's A-not-B task was developed in 1935, the same year as the delayed response task was developed. The main difference between these tasks is that in delayed response, the reward that is hidden on each trial is randomly determined, whereas in A-not-B the reward is always hidden on the same side until the participant is correct twice in a row, then the hiding place is switched to the other side. Dr. Diamond additionally would like to add that there is a connection between her PKU work and ADHD work, because both are based on the dopamine system in the prefrontal cortex having unique properties. In PKU, it is that the PFC dopamine systems turn over dopamine at a faster rate. In ADHD, the PFC dopamine system has a dearth of the dopamine transporter.  For more information on the Piaget A-not-B task, delayed response task, and PKU (pdf) For information on special properties of the PFC dopamine system underlying her PKU and ADHD work: For Neuroscientists: (pdf); For the General Public: (pdf)
December 3, 2020
This episode explores Habits with our guest, Dr. Colin Camerer. We discuss the intersection of neuroscience and economics, neural 'autopilot', and why this is the golden age of social science.  Professor Colin F. Camerer is the Robert Kirby Professor of Behavioral Finance and Economics at the California Institute of Technology, where he teaches cognitive psychology and economics. Professor Camerer earned a Bachelors degree in quantitative studies from Johns Hopkins, a MBA in finance, and a Ph.D. in decision theory from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. Before coming to Caltech in 1994, Dr. Camerer worked at the Kellogg, Wharton, and University of Chicago business schools. He studies both behavioral and experimental economics. 
November 12, 2020
Split-Second Perception
This episode explores Split-Second Perception with our guest, Dr. Jon Freeman. We discuss the use of his software MouseTracker to investigate implicit biases, how these biases affect our perception of others, and what can be done to mitigate them.  Jon Freeman is an Associate Professor of Psychology and Neural Science at New York University and director of the Social Cognitive & Neural Sciences Lab. He received his Ph.D. from Tufts University and was on the faculty at Dartmouth before coming to NYU in 2014. His research focuses on how we perceive other people, such as how we categorize others into social groups, infer their emotion or personality via facial cues, and more generally how we understand and react to our social world. His work examines the cognitive and neural mechanisms underlying person perception, stereotyping and decision-making in social contexts. He takes an integrative, multi-level approach that makes use of several techniques, including functional neuroimaging, computational modeling, and behavioral paradigms. He is also the developer of the data collection and analysis software, MouseTracker. Dr. Freeman is the recipient of a number of awards, including the National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the Janet T. Spence Award for Transformative Early Career Contributions from the Association for Psychological Science, the Early Career Award from the Society for Social Neuroscience, the SAGE Young Scholars Award from the Society for Personality & Social Psychology, and the Early Career Award from the International Social Cognition Network. His work has appeared in media outlets such as the New York Times, the Washington Post, and TIME Magazine.
October 22, 2020
Happiness & Decision-Making
This episode explores Happiness & Decision-Making with our guest, Dr. Robb Rutledge. We discuss his lab's equation for happiness, the subjective nature of happiness, and how our emotions play a role in decision-making.  Dr. Robb Rutledge has a BSc from Caltech and a PhD in Neural Science from New York University where he worked with Paul Glimcher. He was a postdoctoral fellow at University College London with Ray Dolan and Peter Dayan before joining the faculty of University College London. This summer, his lab moved to Yale University. His lab combines computational models, brain scanning, and pharmacology to study decision making and affective states like happiness in healthy and clinical populations of all ages. 
October 8, 2020
Space, Time & Fear
This episode explores space, time, and fear with our guest, Dr. Dean Mobbs. We explore what 'fear' can be defined as, ecologically valid testing paradigms, as well as the spirit of the academic community.  Dr. Dean Mobbs is interested in the intersection of behavioral ecology, economics, emotion, and social psychology. By understanding the neural, computational and behavioral dynamics of human social and emotional experiences, he wants to develop theoretical models that merge those fields. Using brain-imaging, computational modeling and behavioral techniques, his lab is probing the neurobiological systems responsible for fear and anxiety, revealing how people learn to control their fears, and how anxiety and psychiatric disorders disrupt those processes. He's interested in the value of social behavior. In particular, he's trying to determine the behavioral and neural signatures behind positive social interactions—for example, those involved with altruism, empathy, and when viewing others' success as rewarding (vicarious reward and reflected glory). His research also focuses on the interplay between social interaction and emotion—how fear can depend on whether you're alone or in a group (e.g. risk dilution).
September 24, 2020
The Emotional Brain
This episode explores The Emotional Brain with our guest, Dr. Joseph LeDoux. We discuss how the field of neuroscience has changed, some of Dr. LeDoux's previous research, as well as the role of the amygdala in the brain.  Joseph LeDoux is the Henry and Lucy Moses Professor of Science at NYU in the Center for Neural Science, and he directs the Emotional Brain Institute of NYU and the Nathan Kline Institute. He also a Professor of Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at NYU Langone Medical School. His work is focused on the brain mechanisms of memory and emotion and he is the author of The Emotional Brain, Synaptic Self, and Anxious. LeDoux has received a number of awards, including William James Award from the Association for Psychological Science, the Karl Spencer Lashley Award from the American Philosophical Society, the Fyssen International Prize in Cognitive Science, Jean Louis Signoret Prize of the IPSEN Foundation, the Santiago Grisolia Prize, the American Psychological Association Distinguished Scientific Contributions Award, and the American Psychological Association Donald O. Hebb Award. His book Anxious received the 2016 William James Book Award from the American Psychological Association. LeDoux is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the New York Academy of Sciences, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. He is also the lead singer and songwriter in the rock band, The Amygdaloids and performs with Colin Dempsey as the acoustic duo So We Are. 
September 10, 2020
Neuroscience in Law: The Rise of NeuroTech
This episode discusses Neuroscience in Law: The Rise of NeuroTech with Amanda Pustilnik. We discuss chronic pain in the law, new technologies in neuroscience, and neuroethics.  Amanda C. Pustilnik is the director of the Project on Law and Pain at the Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Law, Brain & Behavior and Professor of Law at the University of Maryland School Carey of Law, where she teaches neuroscience and law, forensic evidence, and special topics in law and science. Her work focuses on the intersections of law, science, and culture, with a particular emphasis on the brain. She has worked extensively on questions of pain in law, convening cross-disciplinary conferences and collaborations involving pain scientists, legal scholars, and bioethicists. She currently is serving on a committee of the National Academies of Sciences, Medicine, and Engineering focused on chronic pain disorders, and, in 2017, authored the legal report of the Aspen Institute’s Report on Opioids in America. In 2015, she served as Harvard Law School’s first senior fellow in law and applied neuroscience, with an emphasis on pain-related disorders and their legal status.
August 27, 2020
Music and the Brain
This episode explores Music and the Brain with our guest, Dr. Michael Kaplan. We discuss the definition of music, changes in the brains of musicians, and the universality of music! Dr. Kaplan has been associated with Penn for over 20 years as a graduate student, a postdoctoral fellow, and most recently as a Lecturer and Lab Coordinator for the Biological Basis of Behavior (BBB) Program. Born and raised in Philadelphia, he graduated from Wesleyan University with degrees in biochemistry and philosophy, then sojourned in New York City to dabble in the music business, where he wrote non-hit songs with titles like “Brain in a Jar.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, he ended up back in science. His research at Penn has focused on synaptic plasticity, both short-term (with Dr. Marc Dichter) and long-term (with Dr. Ted Abel). He is the Master of Ceremonies and head zookeeper at the Neurolab, an undergraduate teaching lab for electrophysiology and computer simulations. Dr. Kaplan has won the BBB Society Teaching Award and was the recipient of the Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching by Affiliated Faculty in 2009. He teaches The Neuroscience of Music.
August 13, 2020
Aesthetics in the Brain
This episode explores Aesthetics in the Brain with our guest, Dr. Anjan Chatterjee. We discuss how the brain responds to aesthetically pleasing faces, places, and things, along with the different ways art can be used.  Dr. Anjan Chatterjee is Professor of Neurology, Psychology, and Architecture and the founding director of the Penn Center for Neuroaesthetics. He is a member of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, and the Center for Neuroscience and Society at the University of Pennsylvania. He received his BA in Philosophy from Haverford College, MD from the University of Pennsylvania and completed his neurology residency at the University of Chicago. Dr. Chatterjee is a founding member of the Board of Governors of the Neuroethics Society, the past President of the International Association of Empirical Aesthetics, and the past President of the Behavioral and Cognitive Neurology Society. He currently serves on the Boards of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia and Haverford College. He has served on the boards of the Norris Square Neighborhood Project and the Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired. 
July 30, 2020
Addiction in the Brain
This episode explores addiction in the brain with our guest, Dr. Claudia Padula. We explore how addiction manifests in the brain, her experience working with a Veteran population, and upcoming studies in the BRAVE lab! Dr. Claudia Padula is the head of the BRAVE lab. Her official title is research health science specialist at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System (MIRECC) and Instructor (Affiliate) at Stanford School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, but her passion for science goes beyond this role. She ultimately wants to improve treatment outcomes for Veterans suffering from addiction by leveraging the power of where neuroscience and clinical psychology intersect. Dr. Padula completed her undergraduate work and research assistant positions at the University of California San Diego and received her masters and doctorate degrees at the University of Cincinnati in psychology with an emphasis in neuropsychology. She fulfilled her APA-accredited clinical internship in neuropsychology at Patton State Hospital and is an alumni of the APA-accredited Sierra Pacific MIRECC postdoctoral fellowship with an emphasis in geropsychology. Claudia enjoys traveling the world, cooking, spending time with her husband and fulfilling her role of academic mama to two kids.
July 16, 2020
Perception & Behavior
This episode explores perception and behavior with our guest, Dr. Chaz Firestone. We explore the field of cognitive science, objective vs subjective perception, and ongoing projects in the Perception and Mind Lab! Dr. Chaz Firestone earned his bachelor's degree from Brown University in both cognitive neuroscience and philosophy, and then stayed at Brown for a Master's Degree in Philosophy before moving to Yale University, where he earned a PhD in cognitive psychology. He then joined the faculty at Johns Hopkins University, where he is currently an Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences and is also a faculty member in the departments of Philosophy and Cognitive Science. At Hopkins, Dr. Firestone directs the Perception and Mind Laboratory, a group of cognitive scientists and philosophers who study how we perceive the world around us, and how our perception of the world interacts with other processes in our minds. Dr. Firestone also enjoys introducing new students to the science of psychology, and teaches a popular Introduction to Psychology course with its own curated playlist. Find the Perception and Mind Lab's new paper here! To stay updated, follow @chazfirestone on Twitter! 
July 2, 2020
Stress & Sickness Behavior
This episode explores stress & sickness behavior with our guest, Dr. Staci Bilbo. We discuss how the brain and immune system interact, what sickness behavior looks like, and how social distancing may be playing a role in this. Dr. Staci Bilbo is a Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University whose research is broadly focused on the mechanisms by which the immune and endocrine systems interact with the brain to impact health and behavior, particularly during critical developmental windows. Her research program is primarily aimed at exploring the mechanisms by which innate central nervous system immune cells, microglia, and signaling molecules such as cytokines and chemokines, influence both normal and abnormal brain development, and the implications for (mal)adaptive behavioral outcomes later in life, including a focus on neurodevelopmental disorders including autism spectrum disorder. Dr. Bilbo received her B.A. in Psychology and Biology from the University of Texas at Austin and her PhD in Neuroendocrinology at Johns Hopkins University. She was on the faculty at Duke University from 2007-2016 before she joined the faculty at Harvard in 2016 where she served as the Lurie Family Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Neuroscience at Harvard Medical School and as the Director of Research for the Lurie Center for Autism at Massachusetts General Hospital for Children. She returned to Duke in 2019 as the Haley Family Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, and maintains an appointment at Harvard to continue her research collaborations in Boston and beyond. 
June 25, 2020
Behavior in the Era of Digital Health
This episode explores behavior in the era of digital health with our guest, Dr. Sohila Zadran. We discuss the growth of technology in healthcare and increasing access for underrepresented populations. Dr. Sohila Zadran completed her undergraduate studies in Molecular Cell Biology and Neurobiology at UC Berkeley, and her doctoral studies in Neuroscience and Neuro-engineering at the age of 23 under National Academy of Sciences member, Dr. Richard Thompson. She subsequently completed her post-doctoral fellowship in Systems Neuroscience, Bioinformatics, Computational Modeling at the California Institute of Technology as a National Institute of Health fellow. By the age of 25, Dr. Zadran had published over a dozen first-author publications in leading scientific journals in the field of genomics, cancer biology, neurobiology, systems biology, cancer stem cells, and computational modeling of cell state transitions. By the age of 30, she had founded three biotech and digital health companies. Dr. Zadran also teaches a course on Artificial Intelligence and Neural Networks at Stanford University and serves as an advisor to several biotech, digital health companies and several Silicon Valley accelerators. She has worked for leading Venture Capital firms, including Pacific Capital Hong Kong, BCG Digital Ventures, Khosla Ventures and Strawberry Creek Ventures.
June 18, 2020
Social Interactions & Group Behavior
This episode explores social interactions and group behavior with our guest, Dr. Michael Platt.  We discuss the concept of collective effervescence, the impact of virtual interactions, and human resilience. Dr. Michael Platt currently serves as the director of the Wharton Neuroscience Initiative and a professor for the Perelman School of Medicine, Wharton School of Business, and the School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania. He is well known for asking some of the most challenging questions in neuroscience - focusing on biological mechanisms that underlie decision-making in social environments. Dr. Platt received his B.A at Yale and his Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania, both in anthropology, and did a post-doctoral fellowship in neuroscience at New York University. He is winner of a MERIT award from the National Institute of Mental Health, the Williams Faculty Research Prize in the Duke University School of Medicine, and was an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellow. Dr. Platt is an editor of major textbooks in neuroscience and cognitive neuroscience, and he is a former president of the Society for Neuroeconomics. He is the former Director of the Duke Institute for Brain Sciences, former Director of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience at Duke University, and founding Co-Director of the Duke Center for Neuroeconomic Studies. Dr. Platt's work has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, the Guardian, and National Geographic, as well as on ABC’s Good Morning America, NPR, CBC, BBC, and MTV.
June 11, 2020
Welcome to the Behind Your Behavior podcast! In this short ten-minute trailer, Roshni and Tina discuss their backgrounds and goals for the podcast. 
June 9, 2020