Marta Peciña, MD PhD Assistant Professor

Dr. Peciña has a broad background in psychiatry, with specific training and expertise in neuroscience, neuroimaging, experimental placebo manipulations, and depression. A central theme of her research has been examining individual differences in mechanisms of treatment response. In particular, I am interested in understanding how prior beliefs impact mood improvement, using placebos as experimental probes. Her laboratory collaborates with neuroscientists, engineers, psychologists, physicians, and others to establish neuroimaging biomarkers of antidepressant treatment response in humans. In particular, Dr. Peciña’s lab seeks to delineate a model-based theory of antidepressant placebo effects that explains the biological substrates of the interaction between expectancies, learning, and mood. In particular, her lab seeks to develop a computationally-informed model of antidepressant placebo effects, that can reliably reflect the richness and variability of this complex phenomenon and be applied to other clinical conditions. In addition, Peciña’s lab seeks to identify novel targets for antidepressant effects through the modulation of placebo-related networks. Finally, Dr. Peciña is interested in identifying sources of interindividual variability in mechanisms of treatment response that will help to deliver personalized treatments for depression. Dr. Peciña’s laboratory utilizes a number of neuroimaging methodologies, including task-based and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), positron emission tomography (PET), computational approaches to behavior and mood, and biological markers. Her educational interest primarily focuses on training the next generation of physician-scientists and scientists interested in understanding the neural and molecular bases of mood and the prediction of treatment responses.