Elizaveta Solomonova

Elizaveta Solomonova
McGill University | McGill · Department of Psychiatry

Ph.D.

About

54
Publications
26,240
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928
Citations
Introduction
Elizaveta is an interdisciplinary cognitive scientist focusing on sleep, dreaming, contemplative studies and social neuroscience. She has completed her M.Sc. in Psychology and her Interdisciplinary Ph.D. in Psychiatry and Philosophy at the University of Montreal under the supervision of Dr. Tore Nielsen and Dr. Sha Xin Wei. She has worked at the Center for Advanced Research for Sleep Medicine and at Concordia University's Topological Media Lab. Elizaveta is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in Psychiatry at McGill University where she works with Dr. Ian Gold on sleep, delusions and epigenetics, and on neurophilosophy of social cognition and contemplative experience. She is also an affiliated research scientist at the YHouse, a New-York based interdisciplinary institute for study of mind.
Additional affiliations
January 2019 - present
McGill University
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Description
  • Neurophilosophy Lab Culture, Mind and Brain research group Social studies of sleep; Sleep and dream experiences in contemplative practitioners; Empathy, perspective-taking and theory of mind
June 2018 - present
Emory-Tibet Science Initiative
Position
  • Lecturer
Description
  • Teaching an intensive neuroscience curriculum for Tibetan monks in South India
January 2018 - present
McGill University
Position
  • Instructor
Description
  • Sleep Mechanisms and Behaviour
Education
September 2011 - November 2017
Université de Montréal
Field of study
  • Interdisciplinary: Psychiatry & Philosophy
September 2007 - March 2011
Université de Montréal
Field of study
  • Psychology
September 2001 - May 2006
McGill University
Field of study
  • Art History, Psychology, Religious Studies

Publications

Publications (54)
Chapter
Full-text available
Sleep paralysis is an experience of being temporarily unable to move or talk during the transitional periods between sleep and wakefulness: at sleep onset or upon awakening. Feeling of paralysis may be accompanied by a variety of vivid and intense sensory experiences, including mentation in visual, auditory, and tactile modalities, as well as a dis...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract: > Context • Phenomenology and the enactive approach pose a unique challenge to dream research: during sleep one seems to be relatively disconnected from both world and body. Movement and perception, prerequisites for sensorim-otor subjectivity, are restricted; the dreamer's experience is turned inwards. In cognitive neurosciences, on the...
Article
Full-text available
Previous work demonstrates that memories about a target experience are incorporated into dream content according to a U-shaped temporal pattern with a peak of incorporations around 1-2 days following the experience (day-residue effect), a diminution on days 3-4, and a recurrence of incorporations on days 5-7 (dream-lag effect). This temporal patter...
Article
Full-text available
Vipassana meditation is characterized by observing bodily sensations, developing emotional and attentional stability and promoting pro-social qualities. Whether these qualities are also reflected in dream content is not currently known. Evidence relating dream content with sleep-depending learning is mixed: some studies suggest that dreaming of a t...
Conference Paper
Introduction. Distress associated with bad dreams and nightmares is a commonly used measure to assess psychological impact of dysphoric or intensified dreaming. It has previously been associated with negative mental health outcomes, including depression, anxiety, and suicidality. Recent theories of nightmare-formation propose an interaction between...
Preprint
Full-text available
This study aimed to investigate the emotional experience of breastfeeding mothers; to compare their emotions during the day and night; and to identify predictors of maternal emotional states. 107 breastfeeding women completed daytime and nighttime online surveys. Mothers reported a more positive emotional experience during the daytime breastfeeding...
Article
Full-text available
Intelligence is a central feature of human beings’ primary and interpersonal experience. Understanding how intelligence originated and scaled during evolution is a key challenge for modern biology. Some of the most important approaches to understanding intelligence are the ongoing efforts to build new intelligences in computer science (AI) and bioe...
Preprint
Intelligence is a central feature of human beings’ primary and interpersonal experience. Understanding how intelligence originated and scaled during evolution is a key challenge for modern biology. Some of the most important approaches to understanding intelligence are the ongoing efforts to build new intelligences in computer science (AI) and bioe...
Book
This volume proposes an interdisciplinary framework that views attention from a particular angle: as a means of accessing, that is, disclosing the world in a practical and meaningful way. Moreover, it investigates how this access is concretely mediated (by technology, culture, environmental conditions). The book is structured in the following two...
Chapter
Full-text available
In this chapter, we review the different ways that attention works in relation to dreams and how it may function in dreams, and apply the framework of attention, proposed in this volume - as a means of accessing and mediating interactions with the world - to the dreaming world. We first review prior work on the role of attention as 1) access to dre...
Preprint
Full-text available
Nightmares are intense emotional experiences that can greatly alter sleep quality and affect most people at some point in their lives. Yet little research has focused on the relationship between nightmares and the subjective experience of sleep quality. In this study, we aimed at investigating the relationship between nightmare frequency, subjectiv...
Article
Full-text available
Background An upsurge in dream and nightmare frequency has been noted since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and research shows increases in levels of stress, depression and anxiety during this time. Growing evidence suggests that dream content has a bi-directional relationship with psychopathology, and that dreams react to new, personally si...
Article
Full-text available
(1) Objective: to determine if a brief mindfulness intervention (BMI) and a health education program (HEP) could improve measures of insomnia in patients undergoing hemodialysis. (2) Methods: this was a planned secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial of BMI vs. HEP for hemodialysis patients with depression and/or anxiety symptoms. The p...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: An upsurge in dream and nightmare frequency has been noted since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and research shows increases in levels of stress, depression and anxiety during this time. Growing evidence suggests that dream content has a bi-directional relationship with psychopathology, and that dreams react to new, personally s...
Preprint
Full-text available
Traditionally, dreams have been seen as experiences that one cannot control, as something that happensto the dreamer (at times through involvement of supernatural powers), without the dreamer’s permission,volition or agency. This view was famously challenged in the advent of psychoanalysis: in his Interpretation ofDreams, Freud proposed that while...
Article
Background The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has caused global disruptions with serious psychological impacts. This study investigated the emergence of new psychiatric symptoms and the worsening of pre-existing mental disorders during the COVID-19 pandemic, identified factors associated with psychological worsening, and assessed chan...
Article
Full-text available
Summary This study aimed to evaluate changes in sleep during the COVID‐19 outbreak, and used data‐driven approaches to identify distinct profiles of changes in sleep‐related behaviours. Demographic, behavioural and psychological factors associated with sleep changes were also investigated. An online population survey assessing sleep and mental heal...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction The negative impacts of COVID-19 have rippled through every facet of society. Understanding the multidimensional impacts of this pandemic is crucial to identify the most critical needs and to inform targeted interventions. This population survey study aimed to investigate the acute phase of the COVID-19 outbreak in terms of perceived t...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Understanding the multifaceted impacts of the Coronavirus-19 (COVID-19) outbreak as it unfolds is crucial to identify the most critical needs and to inform targeted interventions. Methods This population survey study presents cohort characteristics and baseline observations linked to the acute-mid phase of the COVID-19 outbreak in terms...
Article
Introduction Flying is a prevalent but infrequent experience in dreams. Despite a broad interest in such unique dream experiences, there is still no experimental procedure for reliably inducing them. Our study aimed 1) to induce flying dreams in the laboratory using virtual reality (VR), 2) to examine phenomenological correlates of flying dreams, s...
Article
Objectives This study investigates the associations between sleep disturbances, delusional ideation (DI), and depressive symptomatology across the perinatal period. Methods A community sample of 316 mothers completed the Sleep Symptom Checklist, Peters Delusional Inventory, and Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale at three time points: second trim...
Article
Full-text available
AimRapid eye movement (REM) sleep, non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep, and sleep spindles are all implicated in the consolidation of procedural memories. Relative contributions of sleep stages and sleep spindles were previously shown to depend on individual differences in task processing. However, no studies to our knowledge have focused on indivi...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined mother-child interactions and DNA methylation of the oxytocin receptor (OXTR) gene in the child, in relation with controlling-attachment behaviors at early preschool age. Maternal interactive behaviors were coded using the Emotional Availability Scales, and child attachment behaviors were assessed with the Separation-Reunion pro...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Understanding the multifaceted impacts of the Coronavirus-19 (COVID-19) outbreak as it unfolds is crucial to identify the most critical needs and to inform targeted interventions. Methods: This population survey study presents cohort characteristics and baseline observations linked to the acute-mid phase of the COVID-19 outbreak in te...
Conference Paper
Introduction: Sleep disturbances are highly prevalent during pregnancy and postpartum, and are associated with adverse outcomes in mothers and children. Delusional ideation (DI) is relatively prevalent in the general population, including pregnant women. DI may contribute to the development of psychosis and exacerbate symptoms of other disorders, i...
Article
Background: The relationship between disturbed sleep and stress is well-documented. Sleep disorders and stress are highly prevalent during the perinatal period, and both are known to contribute to a number of adverse maternal and foetal outcomes. Arginine vasopressin (AVP) is a hormone and a neuropeptide that is involved in stress response, social...
Preprint
Vipassana meditation is characterized by observing bodily sensations, developing emotional and attentional stability and promoting pro-social qualities. Whether these qualities are also reflected in dream content is not currently known. Evidence relating dream content with sleep-depending learning is mixed: some studies suggest that dreaming of a t...
Article
Full-text available
Face recognition is a highly specialized capability that has implicit and explicit memory components. Studies show that learning tasks with facial components are dependent on rapid eye movement and non-rapid eye movement sleep features, including rapid eye movement sleep density and fast sleep spindles. This study aimed to investigate the relations...
Article
Full-text available
Both rapid eye movement (REM) sleep dreaming and non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep spindles have been linked to processes of memory consolidation. However, relationships between the two phenomena have yet to be explored. In a heterogeneous sample of 53 healthy subjects who had participated in a memory consolidation protocol and who varied in thei...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
sleep-dependent processes of memory consolidation. Procedural memory has been previously linked with rapid-eye-movement (REM) and non-REM (NREM) sleep stages, and with sleep microarchitecture (sleep spindles, rapid eye movements). Vipassana meditation is characterized by trained attention to bodily sensations: experienced meditators show better pro...
Article
Full-text available
Nightmares (NMs) are characterized by intense negative emotion. Research suggests that frequent NM sufferers also have greater inclinations to fantasy and dream-like daydreams, although it is not known whether they experience intense negative emotion as part of these waking state cognitions. We assessed the daydreams and nap dreams of NM participan...
Article
Full-text available
Upshot • This interdisciplinary work draws on phenomenology, Indian philosophy, Tibetan Buddhism, cognitive neurosciences and a variety of personal and literary examples of conscious phenomena. Thompson proposes a view of consciousness and self as dynamic embodied processes, co-dependent with the world. According to this view, dreaming is a process...
Article
Full-text available
Recent years have seen a dramatic increase in the scientific study of contemplative practices. While seated meditation practices have historically been at the center of inquiry in contemplative sciences, movement-based practices, such as yoga, t'ai chi, qigong, and others, are currently coming to the forefront of this discourse. In her introduction...
Article
Full-text available
Isolated reports have long suggested a similarity in content and thought processes across mind wandering (MW) during waking, and dream mentation during sleep. This overlap has encouraged speculation that both "daydreaming" and dreaming may engage similar brain mechanisms. To explore this possibility, we systematically examined published first-perso...
Article
Full-text available
NREM stage 1 sleep, known as a brief interval of transition from wake to sleep, is characterized by neurophysiological events and subjective sensory experiences that suggest the stage may be involved in memory processing. To examine this possibility, we conducted multiple awakenings with a trained participant during short bursts of theta activity d...
Article
Full-text available
The richness and subtlety of the felt presence phenomenon introduced by “Felt Presence: the uncanny encounters with the numinous Other” (Solomonova et al., this issue) offers a challenge to the emerging field of new media. How to create a computer-mediated environment which can engender a spontaneous, creative, and individualized experience such as...
Article
Full-text available
Felt presence, a sensation that “someone is there”, is an integral part of our everyday experience. It can manifest itself in a variety of forms ranging from most subtle fleeting impressions to intense hallucinations of demonic assault or visions of the divine. Felt presence phenomenon outside of the context of neurological disorders is largely neg...
Article
Full-text available
To assess whether dysfunctional autonomic regulation during REM sleep as indexed by heart rate variability (HRV) is a pathophysiological factor in frequent nightmares (NMs). Monitoring with polysomnography (PSG) and electrocardiography (ECG) for 3 consecutive nights: Night 1 (N1), adaptation night; N2, administration of partial REM sleep deprivatio...
Article
To examine whether disrupted regulation of REM sleep propensity is implicated in nightmare (NM) pathophysiology. Heightened REM propensity induced by REM sleep deprivation is belied by increases in REM %, REM density and the dream-like quality of dream mentation during post-deprivation recovery sleep. Compromised regulation of REM sleep propensity...
Article
Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep and dreaming may be implicated in cross-night adaptation to emotionally negative events. To evaluate the impact of REM sleep deprivation (REMD) and the presence of dream emotions on a possible emotional adaptation (EA) function, 35 healthy subjects randomly assigned to REMD (n = 17; mean age 26.4 +/- 4.3 years) and co...
Article
Isolated sleep paralysis (ISP) is a common parasomnia characterized by an inability to move or speak and often accompanied by hallucinations of a sensed presence nearby. Recent research has linked ISP, and sensed presence more particularly, with social anxiety and other psychopathologies. The present study used a large sample of respondents to an i...
Article
Full-text available
Sleep onset (SO) is cognitively and physiologically similar to rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, supporting the notion that REM sleep-related processes are 'covertly' active at this time. The objective was to determine if SO mentation is sensitive to REM sleep deprivation. Two-group cross-sectional design; sleep recordings for 3 nights. Standard slee...

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Projects (4)
Archived project
This project aims at exploring the variety of experiences in sleep including dreaming, parasomnias, memory sources, and others, and at discovering links between contents of the mind, bodily experiences and brain activity.