San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

August 5th, 2009
Price to speak at psychological convention

STAFF REPORT

Larry R. Price, professor in the College of Education at Texas State, will be a guest speaker at the American Psychological Association International Convention in Toronto to be held Aug. 6-9.

The symposium topic will be “Methodological Advances in Functional Neuroimaging: A State of the Science.”

Human functional neuroimaging is an experimental discipline that establishes structure-function correspondences in the brain through experimental psychology, human neuroscience and neuroimaging. It is, essentially, a way of statistically mapping brain functions.

The aim of functional brain mapping is the determination of how and where various cognitive and perceptual processes are controlled within the brain. Using Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Functional Magnetic Imaging (FMI) scientists can detect neural activity occurring in various regions of the brain through metabolic and blood-oxygenation measures.

Data is acquired when the brain is repeatedly imaged while the subject of an experiment is given a stimuli or task. Spatial variations in signal intensity across the neuroimages show the differences in brain activity throughout the experiment. Statistical analysis of the data tries to find the relationship of the activated brain region and the specific aspect of the brain function being manipulated by the stimuli or task.

Price’s research interests are varied and reflect the wide range of subjects that can be analyzed with neuroimaging data and psychometrics. His published papers during the last few years directly address this variety with subjects as varied as motor connectivity, respiratory resistance training on wheelchair athletes, age associated memory impairment and the effects of cranial electrotherapy on violent neuropsychiatric patients.

Price’s symposium is part of the Methodology program in which attendees can receive continuing education (CE) credit. The American Psychological Association Convention anticipates an attendance of 12,000 this year.

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