Kathryn Unruh earns first Stephen and Carolyn Schroeder Young Investigator Award
Assistant Research Professor Kathryn Unruh has received the inaugural Stephen and Carolyn Schroeder Young Investigator Award for Research in Neurodevelopmental Disorders. Established by the former Life Span Institute director and his wife, the $10,000 award is intended for Life Span Institute-affiliated early-career investigators, post-docs, and graduate students whose work involves biobehavioral approaches to neurodevelopment.
Kathryn will apply the award to a research program that will use systems neuroscience approaches to identify neurobiological mechanisms of restricted, repetitive behaviors (RRBs) in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and related neurodevelopmental disorders. Inhibitory control, or the ability to suppress pre-potent contextually inappropriate behaviors, and deficits in reward processing previously have been implicated as psychological mechanisms of RRBs. Using a novel test of oculomotor control, she will investigate the interaction of inhibitory control and reward processes and the discrete cortical- striatal networks that support them to test a novel model proposing that multiple mechanisms underlie RRBs.