Professional Spotlight: Dr. Erika Forbes

Photo Credit: mghresearchinstitute Flickr via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: mghresearchinstitute Flickr via Compfight cc

Three team members of the SOVA Project recently sat down to interview Dr. Erika Forbes.  Dr. Forbes is a Professor of Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Psychology at the University of Pittsburgh.  Dr. Forbes is also the Principal Investigator for the University of Pittsburgh’s Affective Neuroscience and Development Psychopathology Laboratory (ADNP Lab).  The purpose of the ADNP Lab is to investigate neural, behavioral, and subjective aspects of reward function in order to explain the development and the physiological processes of adolescent depression and substance use.

Dr. Forbes received her undergraduate degree in humanities, but she has always had an interest in people.  After receiving her undergraduate degree, Dr. Forbes volunteered with a children’s hotline in the Washington DC area.  It was during this volunteer work, that Dr. Forbes became interested in children and their mental health.  Dr. Forbes is mainly interested in emotion research and trying to understand how emotional processes are different based on age.  Adolescence is an important age, and if emotions can be understood from a biological perspective then this information can be used to inform interactions with adolescents.

To find out more about Dr. Erika Forbes visit: or

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