Welcome to the Sensory InPuts Lab!

Hi! Welcome to the Sensory Inputs lab! This is the personal lab website of Dr. Nicolaas Puts who leads the lab.

The lab focuses on measuring the behavioural, physiological, and clinical response to different types of sensory information in children and adults with and without neurodevelopmental conditions.

We use a variety of methods to assess the perception of touch (tactile sensitivity) and behaviour associated with sensory input (e.g. social touch, sensory reactivity, and difficulties in social function and communication).

We also use Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy to measure markers of GABAergic inhibition and Glutamatergic metabolism. We then combine these measure to study the brain dynamics underlying touch. Recently, our lab has started using other approaches, including EEG and TMS, to further study the biology of sensory processing in health and disease.

We primarily apply these approaches in neurodevelopmental conditions, focusing on Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, and Tourette syndrome. By combining these techniques we hope to 1) identify the biological underpinnings of sensory processing difficulties; 2) identify markers of altered sensory processing to identify whether these sensory differences impact social experiences and comorbid features (e.g. anxiety), 3) investigate these transdiagnostically across neurodevelopmental conditions. Ultimately, the aim is to identify clear biomarkers of altered sensory function with impact on the core symptoms of e.g. ASD and ADHD with clear targets for potential diagnosis and intervention.

The lab is based in the Forensic and Neurodevelopmental Science (FANS) department at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London. We are affiliated with the AIMS-2-TRIALS consortium and Nancy Lurie Marks Foundation Autism Sensory Research Consortium. Dr. Puts is a PI at the MRC Centre for Neurodevelopmental Disorders.

Lab Philosopy

The lab operates on a mission-centric, highly-collaborative, open, transparent basis. This means that all work should contribute to the overarching wider mission of the lab. Within limits, all lab members are expected to support each others work and contribute to everyone’s projects (this also guarantees authorship). Lab members are expected to work together, and be honest and open. Work is expected to be open access. Data are expected to be shared. There will be no judgment based on race, gender, sexual orientation, or other.

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