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Nim Tottenham
Associate Professor
Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 2005

General Area of Research

Developmental Affective Neuroscience, Limbic-Cortical Development, Early-Life Stress

Current Research

The research of the Developmental Affective Neuroscience Lab focuses on the development of neural circuits that underlie affective behaviors across childhood and adolescence, with a particular emphasis on limbic-cortical connections (e.g., amygdala-medial prefrontal cortex).

One major focus of our laboratory is to characterize normative human brain development. We use behavioral, physiological, and functional MRI methods with the aim of identifying sensitive periods during which the environment has the largest influence on neural phenotypes.

A second major focus is to characterize the effects of early-life stress on human brain development. To meet this aim, we also study the neurodevelopment of children and adolescents who experienced various forms of early life stress (e.g., adverse caregiving) in the hopes of understanding the long-term effects of early adversity on human brain development.

Relevant Publications

Gee, D.G., Gabard-Durnam, L., Flannery, J., Goff, B., Humphreys, K.L., Telzer, E.H., Hare, T.A., Bookheimer, S.Y., Tottenham, N. (in press). Early Developmental Emergence of Human Amygdala-PFC Connectivity after Maternal Deprivation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Olsavsky, A., Telzer, E.H., Shapiro, M., Humphreys, K.L., Flannery, J. & Tottenham, N. (in press). Indiscriminate amygdala response to mothers and strangers following early maternal deprivation. Biological Psychiatry.

Telzer, E.H., Flannery, J., Shapiro, M., Humphreys, K., Goff, B., Gabard-Durman, L., Gee, D.G., & Tottenham, N. (2013). Early experience shapes amygdala sensitivity to race: An international adoption design. Journal of Neuroscience, 33(33) 13484-8.

Gee, D.G., Humphreys, K.L., Flannery, J., Goff, B., Telzer, E.H., Shapiro, M., Hare, T.A., Bookheimer, S.Y., Tottenham, N. (2013). A Developmental Shift from Positive to Negative Connectivity in Human Amygdala-Prefrontal Circuitry. Journal of Neuroscience, 33(10)4584-4593.

Goff, B. Gee, D.G., Telzer, E.H., Humphreys, K.L., Gabard-Durnam, L., Flannery, J., Tottenham, N. (2013). Reduced nucleus accumbens reactivity and adolescent depression following early-life stress. Neuroscience, 249, 129-138.

Tottenham, N., Phuong, J., Flannery, J., Gabard-Durnam L., Goff, B. (2013). A Negativity bias for ambiguous facial expression valence during childhood: converging evidence from behavior and facial corrugator muscle responses. Emotion, 13, 92-103.

Tottenham, N. (2012). Human amygdala development in the absence of species-expected caregiving. Developmental Psychobiology, 54(6):598-611.

Nim Tottenham Photo

Columbia University
Psychology Dept.
355D Schermerhorn Ext
1190 Amsterdam Avenue MC 5501
New York, NY 10027

Phone: 212-854-1925
Fax: 212-854-3609

Last modified on October 10, 2014 2:43 PM