Suma Jacob, MD, Ph.D | Principal Investigator
Suma Jacob, MD, PhD is the co-director of the CAN Lab. She is a Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at the University of Minnesota. Suma received honors for her AB undergraduate degree at The University of Chicago and her thesis on “Hemispheric Asymmetries in Attention on a Lateralized Continuous Performance Task”. Continuing at the UofC, she did her PhD and post-doctoral research in the emerging field of social neuroscience. She studied hormone-pathway chemical signals and how they act as modulator pheromones to influence another human’s biology, mood, and unconscious behaviors. Dr. Jacob completed her medical training at UofC and residency in adult, child, and adolescent psychiatry at UCLA, UofC, and the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is double board certified and her research focuses on biomarkers, genetic risk, and treatment targets for neurodevelopmental disorders including autism. Her transdiagnostic research focuses on compulsive and social behaviors; her therapeutic modalities include group and systems interventions. Her current work focuses on data-driven approaches in early development that will differentially predict dimensional and categorical diagnostic outcomes.
Christine Conelea, Ph.D | Principal Investigator
Christine Conelea, PhD is the co-director of the CAN Lab. She is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at the University of Minnesota and a licensed clinical psychologist. Dr. Conelea received her BA from the University of Nevada, Reno and doctorate from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She completed a predoctoral internship and post-doctoral fellowship in child mental health at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Her training has been supported by T32, F32, and K23 awards from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). Prior to coming to Minnesota, Dr. Conelea was an Assistant Professor (Research) at Brown University Medical School. Dr. Conelea's research interests are in Tourette Syndrome/tic disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and anxiety disorders. She is particularly interested in understanding how the brain, environment, and psychosocial factors interact to impact symptoms and treatment outcome. Dr. Conelea's research integrates behavioral and neuroscience methods, including neuromodulation and brain imaging. She is also interested in dissemination of efficacious cognitive-behavioral therapies (CBT) and in studying ways to improve CBT outcomes.
Angela Tseng, Ph.D
Angela Tseng, Ph.D. earned her doctorate in Child Psychology and Neuroscience from the Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota, where she trained in the use of neuroimaging techniques (e.g., fMRI, high-density EEG) and imaging genomics in the context of a research-oriented program focused on developmental psychology. Subsequently, she completed a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) sponsored Postdoctoral Fellowship for Translational Research in Child Psychiatric Disorders at Columbia University College of Physician & Surgeons. Concurrently, as a recipient of the Gray Matters at Columbia Research Fellowship, she began to work towards improving our understanding of the neural underpinnings of social and cognitive function in children and adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Before joining the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, University of Minnesota, she was a Research Associate at the Institute for Translational Research (ITR) in Children’s Mental Health where she worked to bridge the gap between research and practice in children’s mental health. Presently, her primary research focus in the CAN Lab is on the development of novel interventions and treatments for Autism Spectrum and related Neurodevelopmental Disorders. In addition, Dr. Tseng is principal investigator for the PAAD (Project to Assess Assistance Dogs) Study which aims to elucidate genetic and biobehavioral factors that contribute to the psychosocial benefits of assistance dogs in the lives of children with ASD and their families. This project also includes a longitudinal exploratory investigation of the genetic and behavioral traits that underpin successful outcomes for potential assistance dogs and human-animal partnerships.