Jacqueline K Gollan Feinberg School of Medicine, Feinberg Clinical, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Jacqueline K Gollan

Research Interest Keywords

Depression, Neuroscience, Psychotherapy, Women's Health

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Spatial affect learning restricted in major depression relative to anxiety disorders and healthy controls

Jackie K. Gollan; Catherine J. Norris; Denada Hoxha; John Stockton Irick; Louise C. Hawkley; John T. Cacioppo

(Profiled Author: Jacqueline K Gollan)

Cognition and Emotion. 2014;28(1):36-45.


Detecting and learning the location of unpleasant or pleasant scenarios, or spatial affect learning, is an essential skill that safeguards well-being (Crawford & Cacioppo, 2002). Potentially altered by psychiatric illness, this skill has yet to be measured in adults with and without major depressive disorder (MDD) and anxiety disorders (AD). This study enrolled 199 adults diagnosed with MDD and AD (n=53), MDD (n=47), AD (n=54), and no disorders (n=45). Measures included clinical interviews, self-reports, and a validated spatial affect task using affective pictures (IAPS; Lang, Bradley, & Cuthbert, 2005). Participants with MDD showed impaired spatial affect learning of negative stimuli and irrelevant learning of pleasant pictures compared with non-depressed adults. Adults with MDD may use a "GOOD is UP" heuristic reflected by their impaired learning of the opposite correlation (i.e., "BAD is UP") and performance in the pleasant version of the task. © 2013 © 2013 Taylor & Francis.

PMID: 23701242     PMCID: PMC3860358    

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