Outstanding UNSW psychology doctoral student Bronwyn Graham will travel the US next year to undertake postdoctoral research into anxiety disorders, after being awarded a Neurological Fellowship by the American Australian Association.
The Association awards fellowships at the graduate level of up to US$25,000 each year to Australians who will benefit from doing advanced research or study in the fields of business, science, technology, medicine and engineering in the US.
In return, Fellows are expected to contribute to Australia's intellectual capital as well as the country's overall social and economic well-being upon their return.
Bronwyn will work with Assistant Professor Mohammed Milad in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital to investigate possible neural differences in how women inhibit fear.
"Bronwyn's project at Harvard examines possible sex differences in the neural circuitry underlying fear inhibition," says her UNSW supervisor, Professor Rick Richardson.
"Although women are much more likely to suffer from anxiety disorders than are men, we really don't know why that is the case. Bronwyn's work may shed some light on this important issue, as well as potentially lead to improvements in treatments for anxiety disorders."
Bronwyn submitted her PhD thesis last month and also combined her research work with clinical training, which she has also completed successfully.
Her doctoral research resulted in a number of published papers as lead author, including two in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology examining the neural mechanisms underlying fear inhibition.
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