The Emergence of Self-Awareness

How do children learn that certain signals in their gut mean that they are hungry and other signals mean that they are anxious?


Our laboratory is interested in how individuals learn to detect and decipher the signals from their bodies (e.g., of hunger, of emotional experience) and use these signals to guide their behavior. We study individuals for whom this learning somehow goes awry:  individuals struggling with eating disorders (e.g. anorexia nervosa, ARFID, selective eating, pediatric binge eating),  those with chronic medical conditions that may disrupt or complicate this learning (e.g. pediatric gastrointestinal disorders or pediatric cancer) or neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism. Read more...



Congratulations to Our Graduates and the Entire Class of 2019!

Click here to learn more about our lab's graduating seniors and their future plans!

From left to right: Alannah Rivera-Cancel, Dr. Nancy Zucker, Steph Ng, Julia Nicholas, Tatyana Bidopia



Quick Links

If you have a child between the ages of 5-9 years old, we have designed an investigational treatment study to help parents and children learn how to manage tummy aches in a positive way:

If you are the parent of a sensitive/selective eater (also referred to as Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder) or an adult sensitive eater, click below to join a study.

If you have struggled with an eating disorder such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, or binge eating disorder either currently or in the past, click here to learn of ongoing studies:


If you have questions about a  study or the lab, contact our laboratory manager, Alannah Rivera Cancel. 

​Telephone : 919-808-8317

Email :

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