Participate in Research

People like you make the difference!

By participating in a research project, you play a part in helping physicians and researchers develop better ways to diagnose and treat people with mental illness. As a research participant, you learn about the causes of specific mental health problems and what can be done to manage these conditions. 

Find a study to participate in: Enter a keyword below (for example, "depression")

OR

Select keyword(s) from the list below:

Project Title:
Negative Thinking Study
Principal Investigator:
Greg Siegle, PhD
For Information Contact:
Marlee Pyzewski (Email: pyzewskiml@upmc.edu; Phone: 412-864-3515) or Jahala Orsini (Email: orsinijm2@upmc.edu; Phone: 412-864-3564)
What We Are Studying:
This study examines a new, experimental computer-based intervention designed to reduce negative thinking by improving attentional focus through sensory distraction. This study also examines brain and physiological functions in individual with repetitive negative thoughts.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Fluent English speaking adults ages 18-65 who are currently experiencing repetitive negative thoughts.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals with a history of severe head trauma, chronic pain, or a heart condition; psychotic disorder or psychosis; current use of antipsychotics, anticonvulsants, stimulants, anti-Parkinsonians; current alcohol or substance dependence.
What Participation Involves:
Participants will be asked to complete a series of six visits at a UPMC facility in Oakland. The first visit will consist of interviews to assess one's well-being and mental health history. The second visit will include a 90 minute fMRI while we collect physiological data, such as pupil dilation, breathing, heart rate, brain waves, and more while you complete computer-based tasks. On the third, fourth, and fifth visits we will be doing brain training exercises in which participants must attend to an annoying sensation on the forearm. The sixth visit will consist of a 90 minute fMRI which includes recording physiological data and completion of computer-based tasks.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What Compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants can receive up to $200 for full completion.
Brochure Location:
Project Title:
Emotion Regulation in Depression
Principal Investigator:
Jay Fournier, PhD
For Information Contact:
Logan Cummings (Email: cummingslr3@upmc.edu; Telephone: 412-624-5541)
What We Are Studying:
We will be using functional magnetic resonance imaging (or fMRI) to take pictures of your brain while you view different types of pictures, words, or sentences on a computer screen. We will compare fMRI scans from people with depression to those scans from people with no disorders. This will help to improve our understanding of the way the brain works in people who have depression.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Individual that are: 1) Aged 18-40; 2) Currently depressed OR who have no history of psychiatric disorders and 3) Must be right handed.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
1) Individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or an active alcohol or substance use disorder; 2) Individuals currently receiving psychiatric medication or psychotherapy and 3) Individuals with a history of head trauma.
What Participation Involves:
There are two visits involved in this study. The first will involve interviews and questionnaires. During the second visit, participants will undergo an fMRI scan and complete additional questionnaires.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What Compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants will be compensated up to $110 for completing both visits ($25 for the first visit, $85 for the second visit). The study will provide vouchers for bus fare or parking passes at study approved lots.
Brochure Location:
Project Title:
Neural and Social Processes of Positive Affect in Children at Risk for Depression
Principal Investigator:
Judith Morgan, PhD
For Information Contact:
Catherine Venable, Email: pittcarelab@gmail.com; Telephone: 412-624-7991
What We Are Studying:
Reward-related processing in young children at familial risk for depression.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Biological mothers with or without a history of depression and their 6 to 8 year old emotionally healthy children.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Mothers with a history of Bipolar Disorder or Psychosis. Children with psychiatric illnesses or developmental delays.
What Participation Involves:
Visit 1: 3 hour laboratory visit (includes clinical interviews, questionnaires, and child behavioral tasks). Visit 2: 90 minute laboratory visit (includes an fMRI scan for the child).
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What Compensation Do Participants Receive:
Compensation is provided. Please contact Catherine Venable for more details.
Brochure Location:
Project Title:
Cortical Cells, Circuits, Connectivity and Cognition in Psychosis
Principal Investigator:
Beatriz Luna, PhD
For Information Contact:
Kevin Eklund, RN, BSN; eklundkd@upmc.edu; (412) 586-9009 for the first-episode psychosis studies or Alicia Thomas, MA; thomasaa@upmc.edu; (412) 586-9096 for healthy control studies.
What We Are Studying:
We are trying to learn about the causes of psychotic symptoms and are addressing this problem in a number of ways using recently developed methods of studying the structure and functioning of the brain and thinking processes that we believe may be involved. The purpose of this study is to better understand which aspects of brain functioning are affected in psychotic illnesses and whether this changes over time.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Males and Females, Ages 12-40: (1) first-episode of psychosis with little/no previous treatment, and (2) healthy controls with no history of a psychiatric disorder or drug/alcohol problems.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Those with certain medical/neurological conditions, mental retardation, pregnant women, first-episode psychosis subjects with substance dependence in the previous six months or abuse (except for alcohol and cannabis) in the previous month are not eligible to participate. Further, healthy controls who have a history of antipsychotic treatment or a first-degree family history of psychosis are not eligible.
What Participation Involves:
Participants will be asked to complete clinical and diagnostic interviews, urine drug screen, blood draw, neuropsychological assessments, and imaging (MRI) and MEG/EEG studies. Diagnosis will be re-assessed at 6 months for individuals experiencing their first episode of psychosis.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What Compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants may receive up to $250 at baseline and $75 at the 6-month follow-up.
Brochure Location:
Project Title:
Diamond Brain Imaging Study
Principal Investigator:
Mary Phillips, MD
For Information Contact:
TEXT: DIAMOND to 412-999-2758; EMAIL: fmristudies@upmc.edu; CALL: 412-383-3109; WEBPAGE: www.diamond.pitt.edu
What We Are Studying:
Using fMRI scan techniques, this study is focusing on differences in emotion and brain functioning in those experiencing severe distress compared to those who are not.
No treatment is provided.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Young Adults age 18-25 currently experiencing distress severe enough that they have sought treatment. They do not have to meet any disorder but they also are eligible if they do. Matched young adults who have never experienced distress or any psychiatric disorders.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Those on psychotropic medications for more than a couple weeks (or controls - ever); Those with current alcohol or substance abuse; Those with a history of severe concussion, neurological disorder, metal in the body, having claustrophobia, or currently pregnant.
What Participation Involves:
Participants will have a full clinical evaluation to determine eligibility and then complete self-report questionnaires on the screen day. Following that they will have an fMRI scan where they will complete tasks in the scanner and complete a brief clinical assessment & self-report forms. There is also a blood draw, if the participant agrees. For the distressed group, there are 2 follow-up clinical appointments at 6- and 12- months.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What Compensation Do Participants Receive:
Compensation for participation is as follows: $25 - screen visit; $75 - scan visit with potential to 'win' $6 more in the tasks/games in the scanner; $20 - blood draw; and $30 - follow-up visits.
Brochure Location: