Affective Neuroscience, Health Psychology, Lifespan Development, Psychoneuroimmunology
Working in the area of psychoneuroimmunology, Dr. Fagundes uses theories and methods from social/personality, developmental, and applied psychology to examine how stress â€śgets under the skinâ€ť to impact diseases of older adulthood such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, and cognitive decline. He is also interested in how the immune system regulates neuronal function in ways that influence mood and behavior. His theoretical work has focused on the adoption of attachment theory to understand physical health trajectories, particularly in relation to how attachment security can buffer the negative consequences of current and past life stressors. He has authored more than 85 articles and book chapters. The goal of his current funded work is to understand how attachment insecurity in the context of losing a spouse impacts inflammation, an immune marker that is prognostic for cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis, Alzheimerâ€™s disease, and some cancers. With a team of collaborators, he is also developing theoretically based interventions to improve the negative physical health consequences of stressful contexts. The National Institute of Health (NIH) funds most of his research; Dr. Fagundes has also been the primary mentor on several NIH training grants. He was named a â€śRising Starâ€ť by the Association of Psychological Science. He was the recipient of the Robert Ader New Investigator Award from the Psychoneuroimmunology Research Society, the Neal E. Miller New Investigator Award from the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research, and the Excellence in Health Psychology Research Award by an Early Career Professional from Division 38 of the American Psychological Association.