The UCLA 300 Project Cognitive Phenotyping in Healthy Volunteers

Project summary

his project characterizes the working memory, declarative memory, and response inhibition processes underlying creative cognition, and examines the genetic architecture of these human traits.

We have defined key cognitive component processes that putatively underlie creative cognition – novelty generation, working and declarative memory functions, and response inhibition functions – and in this project aim to measure these cognitive processes and identify their genetic bases.  The proposed research will examine selected cognitive phenotypes reflecting these component cognitive functions, in order to determine their patterns of association (leading to the definition of novel “latent traits” or “endophenotypes”) which may be more closely related to brain function and genetic bases than raw test scores or more complex behavioral phenotypes.  To accomplish this we aim to examine about 300 people with a battery of behavioral questionnaires and cognitive tests, and obtain a blood sample from which DNA will be extracted and genotyping will be performed.  This project is a large-scale pilot study for future work that will aim to further refine specific cognitive phenotype measures, and relate these phenotypes to specific brain mechanisms and their genetic bases.

Investigators
Primary Investigator: 
Robert Bilder
Primary Investigator: 
Istvan Molnar-Szakacs
Primary Investigator: 
Susan Bookheimer, Ph.D.
Primary Investigator: 
Tyrone Cannon
Primary Investigator: 
Nelson Freimer