Honorary Professor Hermens is a cognitive psychophysiologist who studies psychiatric and substance use disorders in young people. He has training and expertise in youth mental health, cognitive psychophysiology, neuropsychology, neuroimaging, substance misuse and clinical trials. As Team Leader of the Youth Mental Health Research Program at the Brain & Mind Centre, he oversees a team of clinicians and scientists conducting neurobiological research including neuropsychology and neuroimaging in adolescents and young adults with psychiatric disorders such as depression, psychosis, bipolar disorder and substance misuse. “I have always been interested in the biological aspects of psychology”, says Prof Hermens. His prior work in ADHD and schizophrenia resulted in significant contributions to these fields. His PhD research involved neurophysiological measures of central and autonomic nervous system activity in ADHD, the results of which have had profound implications for diagnosis and treatment. He was the first to describe sex-based differences in patterns of nervous system activity in ADHD, and consequently, helped to predict which patients would respond best to stimulant vs non-stimulant medication. The resultant two publications were each in the ‘Top 25 Hottest Articles’ list in the respective journals. His other major contribution to neurobiology includes reconceptualisation of the role of a biomarker for schizophrenia. Prof Hermens received the Early Career Investigator Award (2010) at the Australasian Schizophrenia Conference. He is Deputy Postgraduate Coordinator at the Brain & Mind Centre.
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