Schulich school of Medicine and Dentistry logo Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry

Dr. Derek Mitchell

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Associate Professor
Departments of Psychiatry and Anatomy & Cell Biology

Ph.D. University College London

Office: 202 Natural Sciences Centre
519-661-2111 Ext. 84862

Research Interests:

Dr. Mitchell's research is principally aimed at determining how dissociable neural systems integrate emotion with cognition and behaviour. The work is designed to provide fundamental knowledge about the functional neuroanatomy behind the experience and control of emotions such as fear, anxiety, and anger. The approach is also used to elucidate the pathophysiology of a range of psychiatric disorders from psychopathy, which features impoverished affective responding and poor behavioural controls, to mood and anxiety disorders, which feature a failure to manage or modulate emotional responding. Our techniques include fMRI, MEG, psychophysiological, and neuropsychological methods in healthy individuals, patients with developmental or acute psychiatric disorders, and patients with acquired brain lesions.

Selected Publications:

  1. Greening, S.G., Finger, E.C., & Mitchell, D.G.V. (2011). Parsing decision making processes in prefrontal cortex: Response inhibition, overcoming learned avoidance, and reversal learning. NeuroImage, 54(2), 1432-1441. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage. 2010.09.017

  2. Mitchell, D.G.V. (2010). The nexus between decision making and emotion regulation: A review of convergent neurocognitive substrates. Behavioral Brain Research, 217(2011), 215-231. doi:10.1016/j.bbr.2010.10.030

  3. Amting J.M., Greening S.G., Mitchell D.G.V. (2010). Multiple mechanisms of consciousness: The neural correlates of emotional awareness. Journal of Neuroscience, 30(30), 10039-47.

  4. Mitchell, D.G.V., Luo, Q., Avny, S.B., Kasprzycki, T., Gupta, K., Chen, G., Finger, E.C., Blair, R.J.R. (2009). Adapting to dynamic stimulus-response values: Differential contributions of inferior frontal, dorsomedial and dorsolateral regions of prefrontal cortex to decision making. Journal of Neuroscience, 29(35), 10827-10834.

  5. Amting, J.M., Miller, J.E., Chow, M., & Mitchell, D.G.V. (2009). Getting mixed messages: The impact of conflicting social signals on the brain’s target emotional response. NeuroImage, 47, 1950-1959.

  6. Mitchell, D.G.V., Luo, J., Vythilingham, M., Finger, E. and Blair, R.J.R. (2008) The interference of operant task performance by emotional distracters: An antagonistic relationship between the amygdala and frontoparietal cortices. NeuroImage 40: 859-868.

  7. Mitchell, D.G.V. , Richell, R.A., Pine, D. and Blair, R.J.R (2008) The contribution of ventrolateral and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex to response reversal. Behavioural Brain Research 11; 187(1): 80-87.

  8. Mitchell, D.G.V. , Nakic, M., Pine, D.S. and Blair, R.J.R (2007) The impact of processing load on emotion. NeuroImage 34: 1299-1309.

  9. Mitchell, D.G.V., Richell, R.A., Leonard, A., and Blair, R.J.R. (2006) Emotion at the expense of cognition: Psychopathic individuals outperform controls on an operant response task. Journal of Abnormal Psychology 115(3): 559-66.

  10. Mitchell, D.G.V., Fine, C., Richell, R.A., Newman, C., Lumsden, J., Blair, K.S., and Blair, R.J.R. (2006) Instrumental learning and relearning in individuals with psychopathy and in patients with lesions involving the amygdala or orbitofrontal cortex. Neuropsychology 20(3): 280-289.

  11. Mitchell, D.G.V., Colledge, E., Leonard, A., and Blair, R.J.R (2002) Somatic markers and response reversal: Is there evidence of orbitofrontal cortex dysfunction in psychopathic individuals? Neuropsychologia 40: 2013-2022.

For more publications, please visit Dr. Mitchell's Google Scholar page.