Melanie Stollstorff

Melanie Stollstorff

Office: AHC4 452; (305) 348-7961
Dr. Stollstorff's E-Mail
Stollstorff Lab Website

Education and Training

Research Associate, Institute of Cognitive Science, Department of Psychology & Neuroscience, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, CO

Ph.D., Lifespan Cognitive Neuroscience, Dept. of Psychology, Georgetown University, Washington, DC

M.A., Brain, Behaviour & Cognitive Science Program, Dept. of Psychology, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Hon.B.Sc., Psychology, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Research Interests

Dr. Stollstorff studies the neurobiological bases for individual differences in the way we think and feel (cognition & emotion), using a general framework: genes to brain to behavior. Genes that influence neurotransmitter function (e.g., DAT1/dopamine, 5-HTTLPR/serotonin, BDNF) can relate to differences in functional brain activation (e.g., in prefrontal cortex, striatum, amygdala) and in turn, to individual differences in cognition/emotion/behavior (e.g., executive function, reasoning bias, emotional reactivity). Most of Dr. Stollstorff’s work focuses on higher level thinking and feeling, such as executive function, emotional regulation, and deductive reasoning bias. What role do genes play in the modulation of emotion-cognition interaction? How do genes influence response to treatment (medication or behavioral intervention) in children with ADHD? How do genes that contribute to biases in logical reasoning influence the brain during legal decisions, especially under highly emotional circumstances? Using the combination of behavioral, fMRI, genetic and pharmacological techniques, Dr. Stollstorff studies both healthy adults and children and those with neuropsychological disorders to answer these questions.

Select Publications

Stollstorff, M. (2013). Genes of Rationality: Building Blocks for The Neurobiology of Reasoning. In W. De Neys & M. Osman (Eds.), New Approaches in Reasoning, Current Issues in Thinking & Reasoning. New York: Psychology Press.

Stollstorff, M., Munakata, Y., Jensen, A.P.C., Guild, R.M., Smolker, H.R., Devaney, J.M., Banich, M.T. (2013). Individual differences in emotion-cognition interactions: Emotional valence interacts with serotonin transporter genotype to influence brain systems involved in emotional reactivity and cognitive control. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 327.

Stollstorff, M., Bean, S.E., Anderson, L.M., Devaney, J.M., Vaidya, C.J. (2013). Rationality versus Emotionality: Serotonin transporter genotype influences reasoning bias. Social, Cognitive & Affective Neuroscience, 8, 404-409.

Gordon, E.M., Stollstorff, M., Devaney, J.M., Vaidya, C.J. (2012). Effect of dopamine transporter genotype on intrinsic functional connectivity depends on cognitive state. Cerebral Cortex, 22, 2182-2196.

Stollstorff, M., Vartanian, O., Goel, V. (2012). Levels of conflict in reasoning modulate right lateral prefrontal cortex. Brain Research, 1428, 24-32.

Gordon, E.M., Stollstorff, M., Vaidya, C.J. (2012). Using spatial multiple regression to identify intrinsic connectivity networks involved in working memory performance. Human Brain Mapping, 33, 1536-1552.

Simon, J.R., Stollstorff, M., Westbay, L.C., Vaidya, C.J., Howard, J.H. Jr., Howard, D.V. (2011). Dopamine transporter genotype predicts implicit sequence learning. Behavioral Brain Research, 216, 452-457.

tollstorff, M., Foss-Feig, J., Cook, E.H., Stein, M.A., Gaillard, W.D., Vaidya, C.J. (2010). Neural response to working memory load varies by dopamine transporter genotype in children. NeuroImage, 53, 970-977.

Goel, V., Stollstorff, M., Nakic, M., Knutson, K., Grafman, J. (2009). A role for right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex in reasoning about indeterminate relations. Neuropsychologia, 47, 2790-2797.

Vaidya, C.J., Stollstorff, M. (2008). Cognitive neuroscience of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Current status and working hypotheses. Developmental Disabilities Research Reviews, 14, 261-267.

Kadis, D.S., Stollstorff, M., Elliott, I., Lach, L., Smith, M.L. (2004). Cognitive and psychological predictors of everyday memory in children with intractable epilepsy. Epilepsy & Behavior, 5, 37-43.

Courses Taught

Senior Seminar in Cognitive Neuroscience
Senior Seminar in Genes, Brain & Behavior
Cognitive Neuroscience (Graduate level)