Welcome to the lab!

  • Where science happens
  • Frequency-specific, direction-selective, coordination between BLA and ACCg for prosocial decision, Dal Monte et al., 2020, Nature Neuroscience
  • Applying Marr's three levels to understand social specificity in the 'social brain', Lockwood, Apps, and Chang, 2020, TiCS
  • Our comprehensive review across humans, monkeys, and rodents supports the importance of the prefrontal-amygdala circuits in social decision-making. From Gangopadhyay, Chawla et al., 2020, Nature Neuroscience
  • dmPFC and decision-making on behalf of others, Piva et al., 2019, eLife
  • Possible benefit of combinatorial oxytocin neuropharmacology in social cognition, Fan*, Weinberg-Wolf* et al., 2019, TiCS
  • Combined administration of oxytocin and naloxone supralinearly increases social attention following mutual eye contact and mutual receipt of reward, Dal Monte*, Piva* et al., 2017, PNAS
  • ACCg and its specialized contributions to social cognition, Apps et al., 2016, Neuron
  • Social gaze dynamics following mutual eye contact and social relations, Dal Monte*, Piva* et al., 2016, J Neurophys
  • Single-neuron recording
  • Kirtland Hall at Yale
  • SHM at Yale


*We are recruiting graduate students*


Our team studies the neural mechanisms underlying social interaction.

What brain mechanisms enable us to interact with others?  

Our brains were evolved to deal with increasing demands of social interactions. Social behaviors are reward-driven, whether their motivating factors are physical rewards, such as food and sex, or more abstract rewards, such as vicarious experience and interpersonal reputation. Investigating how the brain computes social preferences and mediates prosocial and antisocial decisions can offer an ecologically valid and efficient way to understand the brain. In particular, studying how the brain computes social information during dynamic and contingent interactions will likely reveal novel insights into the neural mechanisms underlying social behaviors. Elucidating these neural mechanisms will ultimately help treat social deficits in numerous psychiatric disorders. In addressing these issues, our laboratory focuses on how the prefrontal cortex and the amygdala signal social decisions and mediate social gaze dynamics. We apply both neurophysiological and neuropharmacological approaches during real-life social interactions as well as functional neuroimaging techniques in humans while they make value-based social decisions.