Although humans encounter countless novel experiences, many of these are not retained. Our research focuses on behavioural and neural factors associated with how we form and retain autobiographical memories. For example, we ask questions about how emotion or reward affects what we remember. A branch of this research explores how memory varies across individuals. We approach this topic in a multifaceted manner, combining behavioral research with structural and functional neuroimaging.
We are also interested in the adaptive value of memory. Remembering our past does not just service memory in its own right, it is also critical to our ability to predict and make decisions about future outcomes. We are currently seeking to better understand the cognitive and neural mechanisms by which memory may influence non-mnemonic functions, with a primary focus on imagination and decision making.
Though our collaborations, we explore how memory is altered in special populations, including patients with amnesia secondary to medial temporal lobe damage as well as patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Our lab is generously funded through a number of sources, including NSERC, SSHRC, CFI, the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health, and the Women’s Health Research Institute.
We are located in the beautiful Audain Art Centre at 6398 University Blvd (Room 4041), Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4. Our lab phone number is 604-822-8639. Please contact [email protected] if you are interested in joining the lab. Come for the science, stay for the windows! Note that Dr. Palombo is not taking a new graduate student for September 2023.