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The Bodily Self
We combine experimental and lesion-mapping studies in stroke patients, and multi-sensory research in healthy volunteers, to better understand the multi-sensory, embodied basis of the self. Neuropsychological research conducted by the team primarily focuses on patients with damage to the right side of the brain (right-hemisphere stroke). Patients with right-hemisphere stroke show a number of unusual behaviours in relation to the body, such as anosognosia (unawareness) and asomatognosia (disownership). Researching these conditions can help us better understand the neural and psychological basis of self-consciousness, and develop treatments for patients.
Disordered Eating and Body Concerns
Clinical and subclinical disordered eating, and body-related appearance concerns, affect a large number of people. Research conducted by the team aims to understand the cause of disordered eating and body-related appearance concerns. In particular, we examine how information about the external environment is combined with the internal perception of the body. Men with disordered eating and body-related appearance concerns are a population of particular interest in our research - since this population have often been under-represented in this field of work.
Interoception, Metacognition and Mental Health
A rapidly-growing body of research indicates that interoception (put simply - sensing the internal state of the body) and metacognition (thinking about thinking) are important factors in our mental health and wellbeing. These abilities have been linked to a wide range of conditions, including depression, anxiety, eating disorders, PTSD, and autism spectrum disorders (to name a few). Understanding the wide-ranging influence of interoception and metacognition to mental health and wellbeing is a key aim of our research.