I have a clinical and neuroscientific research focus targeting assessment, diagnostics and treatment of depression, insomnia and emotional dysregulation in youth.
I hold a PhD from Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Universitetet and was post doc during 2013-2016 at Department of Psychiatry and the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at University of California San Francisco. I started my current position at Umeå University as associate professor, research group leader for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (CAP) at Umeå University and senior specialist with a clinical focus on trauma, stress-related and affective disorders at CAP Umeå in 2016. I am also over-all responsible for the clinical research in the Region of Västerbotten.
I am teacher trained in yoga and mindfulness-based stress-reduction (MBSR) och mindfulness-based cognitive therapy for prevention of relapse in depression (MBCT) and have taught these programs in Sweden, Italy, US and India and also adapted these programs in a variety of educational and clinical settings. These experiences sparked an interest in contemplative neuroscience.
My research has a clinical focus aiming to improve assessment and diagnostics and develop more effective, non-pharmacological treatment for trauma and stress-related disorders such as depression, anxiety, insomnia and emotional dysregulation in youth. Some studies involve structural and functional neuroimaging of the brain and includes systemic biomarkers for inflammation and biological aging. The overall aim is to develop targeted trans-diagnostic treatments for youth, to restore the aberrant neurocircuitry caused by early adverse life events, which is often expressed as symptoms across multiple diagnostic entities.
My primary current research project is to assess the effectiveness of a novel neuro-scientifically based treatment paradigm for adolescent depression Training for Awareness Resilience and Action (TARA) which was developed at UCSF in collaboration with professor Yang´s research team and the Osher Center for Integrative medicine. I am also involved as co-PI in several research projects at Karolinska Institutet and UCSF.
I am main supervisor for two PhD students at Umeå University, Ida Blomqvist MD. and Erik Ekbäck MD. and for Frida Bayard MD. at the department of clinical neuroscience at Karolinska Institutet, where I am also co-supervisor for PhD-student and clinical psychologist Lie Åström.
I teach CAP at the school of medicine and speech therapy and at our independent course in CAP at Umeå University and have contributed in the development of the courses Emotional and autonomic regulation and Applied Behavioral Medicine at the Department of Neurobiology, Caring Sciences and Society at Karolinska Institutet where I also lecture.