Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour
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Thesis defense Daphne Evereard (Donders series 301)

4 December 2017

Promotors: prof. dr. G. Fernandez, prof. dr. I. Tendolkar

A load on the Mind, neural mechanisms of stress sensitivity

Stress has a significant and long-lasting impact on our brains and behavior. The intensity and the extent of the impact depend on many factors. Genetic susceptibility, personality traits, sex, age and the nature of the stressful experience all shape our brains and future behavior. The current thesis reveals several neural mechanisms for these influences, including hippocampal volumes differences, alterations in amygdala responsivity to emotional facial expressions and gray matter differences in various brain regions. Improving the understanding of these mechanisms that underlie our vulnerability or resilience to stressors that occur across the life span is the basis for future development of resilience-enhancing strategies for vulnerable individuals.