- Friday 12 Jan 2024, 13:00 - 14:30
- PhD defence
- Senate Hall
- Erasmus Building
- Campus Woudestein
On Friday 12 January 2024, M.C. Lutz will defend the doctoral thesis titled: ‘The Role of Performance Monitoring in Psychopathology‘.
Brief summary on the aim of the doctoral thesis:
This PhD dissertation investigates the role of performance monitoring in psychopathology. Performance monitoring is a cognitive control process, that includes the processing of errors and conflict information. This is driven by brain activity of predominately the anterior cingulate cortex. Like with many cognitive control processes (such as inhibition), this ability of the brain to process information is important for emotion and behavior regulation. Ample research confirms that cognitive control processes play an influential role in the risk of developing or the progression of mental disorders, such as addiction and anxiety. The current dissertation builds forth on this research, predominantly using behavioral measures and neurophysiological indices. First, a meta-analysis confirms that two measure of error processing is systematically reduced in patients with externalizing disorders. Second, they pose to be candidate biomarkers for externalizing psychopathology. Third, behavioral measures of performance monitoring are much in development in 7 to 12-year-old children. This development is also associated with the decline in emotional and behavioral problems in primary school children. Finally, social performance monitoring is associated with social anxiety in adulthood, irrespective of (infant) temperament. The results of this dissertation confirm the role of performance monitoring in psychopathology and identify several future avenues for researchers and clinicians to consider cognitive control in diagnostics and treatment. For instance, reduced brain activity may be stimulated using brain modulation for patients with addiction.