Kevin S. LaBar

Kevin S. LaBar

Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., New York University 1996

  • B.A., Lafayette College 1990


My research focuses on understanding how emotional events modulate cognitive processes in the human brain. We aim to identify brain regions that encode the emotional properties of sensory stimuli, and to show how these regions interact with neural systems supporting social cognition, executive control, and learning and memory. To achieve this goal, we use a variety of cognitive neuroscience techniques in human subject populations. These include psychophysiological monitoring, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), virtual reality,  and behavioral studies in healthy adults as well as psychiatric patients. This integrative approach capitalizes on recent advances in the field and may lead to new insights into cognitive-emotional interactions in the brain.            


Emotion, memory, fear, associative learning, brain imaging, psychophysiology

Dunsmoor, JE, White, AJ, and LaBar, KS. "Conceptual similarity promotes generalization of higher order fear learning. (Published online)" Learn Mem 18.3 (2011): 156-160. Full Text

Murty, VP, Ritchey, M, Adcock, RA, and LaBar, KS. "fMRI studies of successful emotional memory encoding: A quantitative meta-analysis." Neuropsychologia 48.12 (October 2010): 3459-3469. Full Text

Huff, NC, Zeilinski, DJ, Fecteau, ME, Brady, R, and LaBar, KS. "Human fear conditioning conducted in full immersion 3-dimensional virtual reality. (Published online)" J Vis Exp 42 (August 9, 2010). Full Text

Stanton, SJ, Labar, KS, Saini, EK, Kuhn, CM, and Beehner, JC. "Stressful politics: voters' cortisol responses to the outcome of the 2008 United States Presidential election." Psychoneuroendocrinology 35.5 (June 2010): 768-774. Full Text

Dennis, NA, Need, AC, LaBar, KS, Waters-Metenier, S, Cirulli, ET, Kragel, J, Goldstein, DB, and Cabeza, R. "COMT val108/158 met genotype affects neural but not cognitive processing in healthy individuals." Cereb Cortex 20.3 (March 2010): 672-683. Full Text

Botzung, A, Rubin, DC, Miles, A, Cabeza, R, and Labar, KS. "Mental hoop diaries: emotional memories of a college basketball game in rival fans." J Neurosci 30.6 (February 10, 2010): 2130-2137. Full Text Open Access Copy

Graham, R, Friesen, CK, Fichtenholtz, HM, and Labar, KS. "Modulation of reflexive orienting to gaze direction by facial expressions." Visual Cognition 18.3 (2010): 331-368. Full Text

Hayes, JP, Morey, RA, Petty, CM, Seth, S, Smoski, MJ, McCarthy, G, and Labar, KS. "Staying cool when things get hot: emotion regulation modulates neural mechanisms of memory encoding. (Published online)" Front Hum Neurosci 4 (2010): 230-. Full Text Open Access Copy

Morey, RA, Petty, CM, Xu, Y, Hayes, JP, Wagner, HR, Lewis, DV, Labar, KS, Styner, M, and McCarthy, G. "Rebuttal to Hasan and Pedraza in comments and controversies: "Improving the reliability of manual and automated methods for hippocampal and amygdala volume measurements"." Neuroimage 48.3 (November 15, 2009): 499-500. Full Text