Sylvius Lecture by Hugo Critchley
- Thursday 19 September 2019
- Pieter de la Courtgebouw
Autonomic control, interoception, and experience
The internal state of our bodies influence how we experience ourselves and the external environment. With a focus on the phasic signals that accompany individual heartbeats, I will discuss evidence implicating the predictive (autonomic) control and interoceptive representation of physiological state as the correlate of mental effort, the basis for affective feelings, and the substrate of self-representation.
Such embodiment of mental processes underpins the experience of perceiving and acting on the world. Knowledge about the brain mechanisms supporting interoception informs our understanding of normative conscious processes and of how psychiatric symptoms arise through their disorder.
About Hugo Critchley:
Hugo Critchley is the Professor of Psychiatry at Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS) and head of the BSMS Department of Neuroscience and Neuroimaging. Hugo’s research focuses on body-brain interaction in health and across psychiatric disorders. Since 2010, he has codirected the University of Sussex Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science with Prof Anil Seth.
Hugo trained in Physiology and Medicine in the University of Liverpool before completing a Doctorate in Psychological Studies at the University of Oxford. He subsequently combined research and psychiatry training at the KCL Institute of Psychiatry and through fellowships held at the Functional Imaging Laboratory, UCL Institute of Neurology where he developed expertise in neuroimaging and clinical autonomic science. Hugo moved from to Sussex as inaugural (foundation) Professor of Psychiatry at BSMS in 2006. Clinically, Hugo is trained in neuropsychiatry and leads a busy clinical service for adults with neurodevelopmental conditions, including autism, ADHD and Tourette syndrome.