Trinity College Dublin

Skip to main content.

Top Level TCD Links


Neurobiology and Treatment of Adolescent Female Conduct Disorder: The Central Role of Emotion Processing

What is the study about and what are its goals?
We are studying how our brains deal with emotions, and how we control our emotions and temper. We are trying to understand why boys and girls behave differently, and why some children are seen by others as having more difficult behaviour.
We want to know how the brain reacts to faces showing different emotions. This will help us understand how people behave in real life. We also want to look at how children understand emotions in others, and why some children are better at this than others.
If we know more about why children behave differently, we may be able to help some children do better at school and at home.

What does the study involve?
As part of the study we will collect blood samples from you and also ask you to spit into a plastic pot to measure stress hormones and look at your DNA for genetic testing.
The study will include the following, which may take place on the same day or two separate days:

  1. We will first meet you and your parent or guardian.  We will tell you more about the study, and ask you and your parent/guardian questions about your moods, thoughts, and behaviours. A part of the interview will be audio or video recorded to make sure that the interviews are done correctly. We will also be asking about your lifestyle (e.g. if you exercise, the type of food you eat, whether or not you drink alcohol). This session will take about 1.5 hours and you will be paid 10 euro. Please note that if you tell us anything that we feel may be putting you at risk such as drinking alcohol, using illegal drugs, engaging in sexual activity or criminal activity we will have to inform your parents.
  2. You will come to the university or clinic for around 3 hours and you will be paid 20 euro.We will show you faces with different emotions, ask you how you make decisions, and give you some puzzles to do. The games you will be playing are not very hard and are quite fun. We will ask you to wear some sensors on your chest, back, and fingertips to measure your heart rate and tiny changes in how much you sweat. We will also collect your blood, saliva, and DNA samples at this stage. Pease note that DNA samples derived from this study will be stored in our local biobank in TCD and in the Consortium biobank in Frankfurt. All information collected from you will be securely protected while in storage at TCD and when they are transferred to Frankfurt. If you do not want to do any of these parts of the study, you do not have to.     

Will this be the only time I take part in the study?
Most young people will only take part in the study once, so after they have completed the computerised testing session their involvement in the study will be over.  However, we will be contacting some young people in around 18-24 months’ time for a follow up study.  You are free to opt out of any part of the study if you wish.

What should I do now?
If you would like to take part in the study, please ask your parents/guardian to contact 01 8962315 or You can also go to our website for more information . We will then get back to them to organise the first session.





Last updated 23 November 2016 by School Web Administrator.