Helen Powell (MSc)

Project: I joined the InPuts lab as a PhD student in October 2020. My project focuses on investigating socio‑affective touch in autistic and non-autistic individuals using quantitative psychophysical approaches and understanding how this could relate to differences in low-level tactile processing. A further aim of the project will be to investigate the association between touch processing and psychiatric disorders that commonly co-occur with autism, such as anxiety. In addition, as part of a collaboration with the A*STAR Institute in Singapore, we will look to elucidate the genetic and environmental factors that could contribute to individual differences in perceptual touch, social touch preference, and psychiatric disorders.

Biography: Before joining the lab, I did my undergraduate degree in Pharmacology at Newcastle University, and a master’s degree in Pharmacological Innovation at Paul Sabatier University in Toulouse, France. Following this, I worked for a few years in clinical research, first as a Clinical Trial Assistant, and later as a Medical Writer, where I wrote Clinical Study Reports for Phase I trials investigating treatments in ASD, schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease.L. MSc in Neuroscience and Medical radiation. Loves to study anything MRS-related, also likes to drink good coffee and contemplate paintings.

Supervisors: Nicolaas Puts (1st) & Michael Meaney (2nd)