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There are various projects done in the lab, which collectively focus on the topics of cognitive control, cognitive training, and the use of mobile, ecological tools to assess cognitive function, mood and behavior. Studies are done in the lab but also in the field, using mobile phone apps, smart tracking bands, and wearable devices. Some of the studies use EEG to measure brain activity and track correlates of cognitive and mood states.

Mental Health and Cognitive Abilities

List of studies on the subject

The link between depression, inhibitory control, and daily mood variability

Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a chronic condition, characterized by emotional, physical, motivational and cognitive symptoms. In terms of cognitive abilities, inhibitory control, the executive function process which allows us to maintain goal-directed behavior while ignoring distractions, is considered a key, and even causal factor, in depression. Despite its significance for depression, we still lack the knowledge about the variation in inhibitory control in daily life, and the link between inhibitory control and ecological, daily variations, in mood.

The current project will use a mobile app (‘Moodify’) to monitor and track, ecologically, participants’ mood, and measure the link between mood variations and inhibitory control. Inhibitory control is measured using various tasks, including multiple object tracking, Stroop task and a Go/No-Go task.

Collaborators: Prof. Omer Bonne (Hadassah Psychiatry); Posit Science Corporation


Inhibitory control training for depression

Given that inhibitory control seems key in depression, the current project aims at testing whether adaptive, mobile training of inhibitory control abilities can reduce depressive symptoms in those suffering from major depression. Training is performed using an app installed on the patient’s mobile device, and varies adaptively based on individual performance. Cognition, depression, anxiety and function is measured at baseline, immediately following training and after a few weeks (follow up).

Student (MA): Noam Einav

Improving cognition and function in cancer survivors

Between 30-50% of cancer survivors report cognitive decline, which may result from the malignancy itself or is a by-product of treatments (chemotherapy, radiation). The current pilot study will test the effectiveness of a combined treatment approach, which includes remote cognitive training and functional treatment using tele-rehabilitation. We will assess cognitive function, quality of life and daily function in adult cancer survivors.


Collaborators: Dr Yafit Gilboa (Psychology); Dr. Chen Makranz (Oncology, Hadassah)

Funding: Israeli Cancer Association


The link between mood, emotion and empathy

Our ability to empathize with others is affected by our mood and the intensity of our emotional experience. In the current study, we examine the effects of mood on our ability to emphasize.

Student (PhD): Noam Roth

Collaborators: Dr. Anat Perry (Psychology)

Monitoring and building resilience of male and female warriors in IDF, using ecological, mobile tools

Resilience is an important factor determining how well warriors can cope with stressors during their military service. However, the factors affecting resilience and its manifestation in daily life is not well understood. In the current research, we will use a mobile application and a smart tracking watch to monitor resilience of male and female warriors during their training, and then measure how inhibitory control training improves resilience in these populations. We will also study the differences in resilience and coping with challenges between male and female warriors.

Students (MA): Anat Afek, Rina Ben Avraham

Collaborators: Dr. Yafit Gilboa (School of OT), Dr Ariel Ben Yehuda (IDF), Noa Barazin (IDF)

Funding: Ministry of Defense (Mafat)

Autism and ADHD

List of studies on the subject

Computerized social cognitive training in autism

Children with autism show severe deficits in social cognition and social functioning. Yet, current interventions do not address these difficulties effectively. In the current study, we examine the feasibility and efficacy of remote intervention for social cognition in autism. Participants will engage in 6 weeks of computerized training which includes social cognition and social situation training, either from home or from the lab.

Students (MA): Chen Yahav and Netta Amir

Ecologically tracking the link between emotion regulation and cognitive control in ADHD

Emotional dysregulation is considered key in ADHD. Yet, measuring emotion dysregulation using a one-time measurement in the lab is difficult. In addition, the link between emotion dysregulation and executive function, which is also compromised in ADHD, is still not understood. In the current study, we use ecological monitoring – using mobile apps and smart watches – to measure daily variations in emotion regulation and in executive function, and measure their co-variation over time.

Student (PhD): Maayan Cohen

Collaborators: Prof. Adina Maeir (School of OT); Dr. Itai Berger (Child Neurology)

Mobile neurofeedback as a treatment for ADHD in adults

Neurofeedback (NF) has been proposed a potential tool to ‘renormalize’ abnormal brain activity in populations such as ADHD and ASD: participants receive real-time feedback on their neural activity, and can try and regulate it. Most NF studies were done in the lab or in the clinic, and the results in the literature regarding the effectiveness of this method are mixed. In the current study, we will use a novel technology developed by Myndlift, which use a mobile headset and a tablet to allow participants to train from home. Adults with ADHD will complete 3 weeks of NF training. Measures such as attention level, function and cognition will be measured.

Neural correlates of inhibitory control in social and non-social settings in autism

Deficits in inhibitory control seem key in autism. Yet, their nature is not entirely understood. For example, it is unclear whether these deficits are general or only appear in relevant social context. Here, we examine inhibitory control in children with autism using social and non-social stimuli, and measure the neural correlates of inhibitory control in autism compared with typically-developing children.

Student (PhD): Ornella Dakwar-Kawar

Collaborators: Dr. Itai Berger (Child Neurology)