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Want to explore the mechanism of emotion regulation !

Misa Kurihara

Nagoya University、Ph. D. Student

Challenge period

2021-07-21 - 2024-03-31

Final progress report

Fri, 30 Dec 2022 19:43:54 +0900

Progresses

18 times

Supporters

11 people

Elapsed time

Wed, 21 Jul 2021 10:00:00 +0900

Comment from academist staff
Why do people fail to control their emotions?

Controlling emotions is important for social adaptation, but it is difficult to always respond appropriately. Ms. Kurihara, who feels that she herself is not good at controlling her emotions, is conducting research with the goal of helping people who feel difficulty in living due to emotional disorders by clarifying the mechanisms that give rise to emotions and the causes of control failure. She also aims to communicate her research widely to build a bridge to make psychology useful in our lives!

A failure of emotion regulation

Since we were a child, we might be taught to “control emotions appropriately in social settings”. Since we grew up, we might try to deal with emotions and keep calm in order not to damage social relationship even though we were harmed by someone else. Emotion control is important to spend a good social life.

However, we cannot always control emotions. Sensitive persons who tend to feel strong positive and negative emotions might find it difficult to build up a better social relationship and do rational decision making. In particular, mental disorder patients such as mood disorder might struggle with these issues.

“Why do we fail to regulate emotions?” “How do emotions emerge?”
I am trying to answer these questions by manipulating neurochemicals in our brains and scanning brain imaging data. My goal is to reduce the mood disorders exhibiting emotion dysregulation.

Neuroendocrine process of a failure of emotion regulation

How does the neuroendocrine process involve a failure of emotion regulation?

In both healthy people and mental health disorder patients, the neurotransmitters involve a failure of emotion regulation. For instance, low serotonin and dopamine contribute to impulsive and emotional responses.

When I studied in the UK, I found that melatonin, a sleep hormone, contributes to a decline in regulatory ability of emotion. However, it has been unclear whether melatonin affects emotions itself not only regulatory ability.

Using psychophysiological methods, I aim to explore whether melatonin increases emotional responses, such as a decrease in heart rate and increase in skin conductance response. This research will elucidate the neuroendocrine mechanism of a failure of emotion regulation for healthy people, and for mental disorders patients who cannot regulate emotions in the future.

The relationship between “melatonin” and emotion

First, we need to build a manipulation method of melatonin in order to investigate how melatonin contributes to emotion and emotion regulation. In my PhD project, I would like to manipulate melatonin using light and collect melatonin from saliva samples. Using dim light, natural room light and blight light, we are going to establish the manipulation and measurement methods of melatonin.

Then, we explore how melatonin contributes to emotion. We will record the physiological responses when participants join a social decision making task called the Ultimatum Game and find whether melatonin increases emotional responses. If melatonin increases emotion, then we are going to explore whether melatonin increases negative emotions by scanning amygdala and habenula related to emotions using a neuroimaging technique called fMRI.

Ask for support

My ultimate goal of research is to explore how emotions emerge and why people cannot regulate emotions and to publish the research which helps affective disorders patients such as mood disorder.
I have two reasons why I have decided to apply for this cloud funding. First, we were trying to replicate the finding in master’s course in the UK and China, but we could not do this due to Covid-19. I could not apply for fellowship and currently need financial support to continue my study.
Second, I am interested in outreach. I was working as a writer for a while, and I understand the importance and interestingness of delivering psychological research to the public. Using my experience, I would like to be a person who can deliver the science to the public to make the most of the psychological research.

Your support will be used for the living costs and research grants. Research grants include participants fees, participation fees in conference and textbooks.

Profile

Misa Kurihara

Nice to see you. I am Misa Kurihara, a PhD student in Nagoya University. I am researching in the fields called psychology and social and affective neuroscience. After graduating from Nihon University, I was studying cognitive neuroscience at University College London (UCL). After coming back to Japan, I was unable to get into a PhD program straight because of my health issues. I was waiting for my recovery by working as a research assistant at Riken and a writer of psychology at web media. From April in 2021, I have started a PhD in Nagoya University. My favourite thing except for research is art in general. When I am free, I am doing ballet and writing novels. I am also a sensitive person, so I can understand what sensitive persons and mood disorder patients feel and I think this project is important. Please support me!

Project timeline

Date Plans
July 2021 Pilot study and main study 1 – building up a manipulation method
August Publication of my master’s thesis
September Poster presentation at Japanese psychological association
September Poster presentation at international conference
October Publication of my research
November Pilot study and main study 2 – melatonin and decision making
March 2022 Publication of my research
April Pilot study and main study 2 – melatonin and emotions
May Poster presentation at international conference
September Publication of my research
September Poster presentation at Japanese psychological association
March 2023 Writing a PhD thesis
April Poster presentation at international conference
May Poster presentation at international conference
March 2024 Granted a PhD degree

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330 JPY / Mo. tax included

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We will report monthly activities on the supporter limited page. We will deliver the contents and progress of the research, the state of the conference presentation, etc.

Support

2 supporters back

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3,300 JPY / Mo. tax included

Featured : Activity report viewing right

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We will report monthly activities on the supporter limited page. We will deliver the contents and progress of the research, the state of the conference presentation, etc.

Support

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