Human Subject Research & Clinical Studies

Human Subjects Lab

In our research facility we conduct experimental studies designed to investigate the psychophysiological changes resulting from noxious stimulation. Our research interests are focused on the cognitive and emotional dimensions of pain and investigations of pharmacological and non-pharmacological methods for pain management. We use a variety of methods to stimulate human volunteers, including intracutaneous electrical stimulation and air-driven pressure under computer control. Our psychophysiological measurements include heart rate, respiration, blood pressure, skin response and pupil dilation. We also collect continuous electroencephalography (EEG) and evoked potentials (EP). We are developing additional measurement tools such as vocal audiography.

In collaboration with the Center for Advanced Medical Technology we are developing methods for studying imagery of the brain while experiencing pain using functional brain imaging technologies, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and magnoencephalography (MEG).

Clinical Studies Lab

The Clinical Studies Lab conducts research on pain in clinical settings. Clinical research targets pain problems related to patient populations in the domains of acute pain, chronic pain and cancer. Current areas of research include fibromyalgia, chronic back pain, pain assessment in patients and applications of new pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatment methods.