Although emotional or stressful experiences tend to be memorable, emotional arousal can also impair various aspects of memory. In our lab, we are testing the theory that arousal enhances high-priority neural representations but suppresses low-priority neural representations of stimuli, and that these increases in gain are due to interactions between norepinephrine (a neurotransmitter closely linked with arousal) and glutamate (the brain’s primary excitatory neurotransmitter). We also are examining how arousal influences attention and memory differently in late life.

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Email: matherlab.usc.edu
Lab Location: GER 341
Lab Phone: 213-740-9543