Biographical Summary

Dr. Monica Faulkner received her PhD in Psychology with a concentration in Behavioral Neuroscience from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the Spring of 2018 and joined the CPN laboratory in May 2018. Her research has focused on investigating the neuromechanisms of addiction using cognitive behavioral testing, neuroimaging, and pharmacology. Most recently, she has worked on identifying biomarkers and changes in reward circuitry in populations with alcohol and substance use disorders. Combining evidence from preclinical and translational neuroimaging studies, she probed the role of dopamine and the mesolimbic circuit in attentional bias to alcohol related stimuli using dietary dopamine depletion methods and resting state fMRI. Dr. Faulkner has been the recipient of several research awards from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and the Research Society on Alcoholism and received the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Fellowship from NIAAA. As a Post-Doctoral Fellow in Dr. Leggio’s laboratory, Dr. Faulkner is working on psychoneuroendocrinology and neuroimaging studies on the role of the ghrelin system and other gut-brain pathways on alcohol consumption and its underlying neural mechanisms in individuals with alcohol use disorder. In 2019, Dr. Faulkner was awarded a William G. Coleman Jr., Ph.D., Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Innovation Award from the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD).