Eliza Bliss-Moreau, Ph.D.

Neuroscience and Behavior Unit
Core Scientist

Assistant Professor
Department of Psychology
University of California, Davis

Why is it that some people float through life in a sea of tranquility and others spend their days riding an emotional roller coaster? Why does a traumatic experience result in psychopathology for some but leave others unscathed? How does social life get “under the skin” to shape emotional life?

The goal of Dr. Bliss-Moreau’s research program is to answer questions like these. She studies the biological and evolutionary mechanisms that generate emotions. She and her research team adopt a multi-disciplinary, multi-method, and multi-species approach drawing from diverse fields such as social psychology, physiological psychology, neuroscience, primatology, and systems science.

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The Biology and Evolution of Emotion

Effective treatment of mental health disorders requires having accurate models of emotional phenomena. Our work in nonhuman primates allows us to manipulate biological and social variables in order to develop casual and mechanistic models of emotion, a venture that is untenable in humans.