Livia Tomova

Dr Livia Tomova is awarded a Henslow Research Fellowship at Hughes Hall at University of Cambridge where she aims to identify brain markers predicting vulnerability to the effects of isolation and loneliness in adolescents and young adults. Her PhD research at the Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Unit at University of Vienna (supervised by Claus Lamm) focused on the effects of acute stress on neural correlates of empathy. She completed 3 years of postdoctoral training in Cognitive Neuroscience at the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT (working with Rebecca Saxe) investigating how deprivation of social needs affects the human brain. She is the lead author of the paper, published in 2020 in Nature Neuroscience, in which it was demonstrated that forced social isolation evokes cravings of social interactions similar to the food cravings felt when we are hungry.