Yi-Yuan Tang

Yi-Yuan Tang
Arizona State University | ASU

PhD
Neuroscience of physical, cognitive and mental health; science of behavior change; body-mind training; brain plasticity

About

252
Publications
210,883
Reads
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11,431
Citations
Citations since 2017
90 Research Items
6812 Citations
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Introduction
I'm a professor of neuroscience and health science at Arizona State U. Before, I was a professor and Presidential Endowed Chair in Neuroscience and Psychology at Texas Tech U. My research uses neuroimaging (e.g., fMRI, EEG/MEG, PET), physiology (e.g., cortisol, HRV), neurofeedback, brain stimulation, behavioral and genetic methods to study Mental Training, Brain Neuroplasticity, Reducing Stress and Addictions, Behavior Change, and Physical/Cognitive/Mental Health, see more on imcenter.net

Publications

Publications (252)
Article
Full-text available
Background A high attrition rate in medical students has exacerbated the physician shortage in China. However, few studies have explored the risk factors of dropout intention in medical postgraduates. This study compared the prevalence of dropout intention and mental distress between medical and non-medical postgraduates in China and investigated r...
Article
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Background Nurses are at high risk for depression and anxiety symptoms after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. We aimed to assess the network structure of anxiety and depression symptoms among Chinese nurses in the late stage of this pandemic. Method A total of 6,183 nurses were recruited across China from Oct 2020 to Apr 2021 through snowbal...
Article
Full-text available
The outbreak of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has posed a great impact on people’s mental health, especially for undergraduate students. This study aimed to compare the mental health conditions and academic burnout between medical and non-medical undergraduates in China when the COVID-19 pandemic is mitigating. A cross-sectional onl...
Article
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The low‐frequency (<0.1 Hz) fluctuation in sustained attention attracts enormous interest in cognitive neuroscience and clinical research since it always leads to cognitive and behavioral lapses. What is the source of the spontaneous fluctuation in sustained attention in neural activity, and how does the neural fluctuation relate to behavioral fluc...
Preprint
Traditional mindfulness interventions have been frequently reported to be effective in improving cognitive functions. In recent years, however, traditional programs are increasingly replaced by technology-enabled mindfulness interventions. The aim of the present systematic review (PROSPERO ID: CRD42021289480) was to evaluate the research evidence o...
Article
For the past 50 years, cognitive scientists have assumed that training attention and self-control must be effortful. However, growing evidence suggests promising effects of effortless training approaches such as nature exposure, flow experience, and effortless practice on attention and self-control. This opinion article focuses on effortless traini...
Article
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Aging is a complex, multietiological process and a major risk factor for most non-genetic, chronic diseases including geriatric syndromes that negatively affect healthspan and longevity. In the scenario of "healthy or good aging", especially during the COVID-19 era, the proper implementation of exercise as "adjuvant" or "polypill" to improve diseas...
Article
Parvalbumin (PV) interneurons are present in multiple brain regions and produce complex influences on brain functioning. An increasing number of research findings indicate that the function of these interneurons is more complex than solely to inhibit pyramidal neurons in the cortex. They generate feedback and feedforward inhibition of cortical neur...
Article
The basic ability to encode numerical information and discriminate numerical quantity can be found in humans as well as certain nonhuman primates. However, humans are unique in that they can perform advanced numerical computation using abstract numerical symbols and number words after receiving formal mathematical instruction. Although similarities...
Article
Global mental health has increasingly adopted a medicalized approach to addressing challenges and problems. However, medicalizing global mental health produces a narrow view of the problems and solutions because it mainly emphasizes biomedical factors in the globalization of mental health and is disputed cross-culturally. The focus of this chapter...
Article
This handbook is currently in development, with individual articles publishing online in advance of print publication. At this time, we cannot add information about unpublished articles in this handbook, however the table of contents will continue to grow as additional articles pass through the review process and are added to the site. Please note...
Article
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Affective disorders are the leading causes of human disability worldwide; however, the diagnosis is still hard to define, because emotion is the least study subjects in psychology. Recent emotional studies suggest that human emotions are developed from basic emotions, which are evolved for fundamental human lives. Even though most psychologists agr...
Article
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Attention is indispensable to our learning, performance, relationships, health, and daily life, and yet laboratory studies of attention have only scratched the surface of these lived varieties of attention. In this article, we begin with William James' theory of derived involuntary attention, which has largely been ignored in laboratory research. W...
Article
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The beneficial effects of exercise are recognized for preventing physical and cognitive decline during the aging process. However, there is still a gap concerning recommended intensity, volume, frequency and mode of exercise especially for older people. The aim of this study was to investigate an appropriate type of physical activity (PA) model for...
Article
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Methamphetamine (MA) could induce functional and structural brain alterations in dependent subjects. However, few studies have investigated resting-state activity in methamphetamine-dependent subjects (MADs). We aimed to investigate alterations of brain activity during resting-state in MADs using fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (f...
Article
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Background: Interpersonal sensitivity is a prominent mental health problem facing college students today. Trait mindfulness is a potential positive factor that may influence interpersonal relationships. However, the precise relationship between trait mindfulness and interpersonal sensitivity remains elusive, which limits the optimization and furthe...
Article
Volitional eye closure is observed only in conscious and awake humans, and is rare in animals. It is believed that eye closure can focus one's attention inward and facilitate activities such as meditation and mental imagery. Congenital blind individuals are also required to close their eyes for these activities. Resting-state functional magnetic re...
Preprint
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GABA B receptor (GABA B R) antagonists are known to have antidepressant effects. TWIK-related potassium channel-1 (TREK-1) plays a role in GABA B R signaling. However, the role of TREK-1 in the antidepressant actions of GABA B R antagonist is still unclear. This study aimed to investigate whether TREK-1 mediates the antidepressant actions of GABA B...
Article
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Most biological brains, as well as artificial neural networks, are capable of performing multiple tasks [1]. The mechanisms through which simultaneous tasks are performed by the same set of units are not yet entirely clear. Such systems can be modular or mixed selective through some variables such as sensory stimulus [2,3]. Based on simple tasks st...
Preprint
BACKGROUND Since the 1970s, psychological and neuroscientific research has had an increasing interest in mindfulness meditation. The resulting findings were followed by various programs which are based on the same idea: mindfulness meditation is a process of openly attending, with awareness to one’s present moment experience. In recent years the tr...
Article
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Previous studies suggest that the practice of long-term (months to years) mindfulness meditation induces structural plasticity in gray matter. However, it remains unknown whether short-term (<30 days) mindfulness meditation in novices could induce similar structural changes. Our previous randomized controlled trials (RCTs) identified white matter c...
Article
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Sleep quality can affect the physical and mental health, as well as the personal development of college students. Mindfulness practices are known to ameliorate sleep disorder and improve sleep quality. Trait mindfulness, an innate capacity often enhanced by mindfulness training, has been shown to relate to better sleep quality and different aspects...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: College student interpersonal sensitivity has received increased attention in recent years, and trait mindfulness has been found to be a protective factor in interpersonal relationships. However, little is known about the mediating and moderating mechanisms underlying this relation. The aim of this study was to investigate (a) the media...
Article
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Mindfulness meditation has become a promising intervention for promoting health and well-being. Neuroimaging studies have shown its beneficial effects on brain functional activity, connectivity, and structures following months to years of practice. A series of randomized controlled trials indicated that one form of mindfulness meditation, the integ...
Article
Full-text available
Previous studies have shown that physical exercise and mindfulness meditation can both lead to improvement in physical and mental health. However, it is unclear whether these two forms of training share the same underlying mechanisms. We compared two groups of older adults with 10 years of mindfulness meditation (integrative body-mind training, IBM...
Chapter
Finding a universal panacea for everyone is an impossible mission, as each individual is unique in many observable ways. For psychological interventions that aim to promote individual health and well-being, finding one intervention that addresses all psychological problems and symptoms is equally impossible. Given the interindividual variability pr...
Chapter
Meditation can be a lifetime practice and part of a healthy lifestyle. To illustrate that meditation is a contemplative practice that can be engaged over the course of one’s lifespan, we begin our discussion with the implementation of meditation programs in education settings for children and adolescents. For instance, meditation programs have been...
Chapter
Despite considerable scientific progress in revealing the effects and mechanisms of meditation, there are still many critical research questions needing to be better addressed and explicated to advance our understanding of meditation. In previous chapters we summarize representative empirical findings with regard to the effects of meditation, as we...
Chapter
It is widely known through daily observation and scientific research that people from Western and Eastern civilizations hold different thoughts, values, and beliefs that have the potential to affect meditation practice and outcomes. There has been ample evidence indicating that people from different cultures, such as Chinese and American cultures,...
Chapter
Meditation practices engage our sympathetic and parasympathetic systems to induce a relaxing, calm, and effortless state of consciousness. It also requires the balanced coordination of these two systems to maintain a meditative state throughout the duration of practice. In this chapter we extensively discuss a theoretical and mechanistic framework...
Chapter
Individual differences in response to medical treatment and procedures are widely recognized by physicians and healthcare professionals. Even for psychological interventions offered within clinical contexts, individual variability can often be observed by therapists. Notably, not only are such differences visible at a one-on-one patient to therapis...
Chapter
Many people are interested in meditation, but do not recognize the importance of individual differences in affecting the learning and practice of meditation. Consequently, they do not understand why there are so many people who try meditation, but later on quit practicing it. People clearly respond to meditation differently and these differences ma...
Chapter
Scientific investigations of individual differences are particularly prominent in the field of psychology and are also widely known among the general public due to numerous reports by mass media. One of the most fruitful research areas concerning individual differences has been personality psychology, which is dedicated to the study of individual p...
Chapter
The brain supports a wide array of daily functions, from monitoring bodily states and associated physiological and metabolic processes to engaging higher-level cognitive processes for fulfilling different task demands. During meditation, specific brain regions and networks involving attention, interoceptive awareness, emotion, and self-related proc...
Chapter
The scientific investigation of meditation is a rapidly growing field of study involving multimodal techniques and methodologies that leverage the strengths of the most recent technological advances in psychology and cognitive neuroscience. Some of the frequent used measurement include psychological instruments, physiology assessments, genotyping,...
Article
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Sustained attention is a fundamental ability ensuring effective cognitive processing and can be enhanced by meditation practice. However, keeping a focused meditative state is challenging for novices because involuntary mind-wandering frequently occurs during their practice. Inspired by the potential of force-control tasks in invoking internal soma...
Article
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word count-161 Significance Statement-119 Introduction word count-551(including in-text references)
Article
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Psychological well-being is a core feature of mental health, and may be defined as including hedonic (enjoyment, pleasure) and eudaimonic (meaning, fulfillment) happiness, as well as resilience (coping, emotion regulation, healthy problem solving). To promote psychological well-being, it is helpful to understand the underlying mechanisms associated...
Article
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How emotions are represented in the nervous system is a crucial unsolved problem in the affective neuroscience. Many studies are striving to find the localization of basic emotions in the brain but failed. Thus, many psychologists suspect the specific neural loci for basic emotions, but instead, some proposed that there are specific neural structur...
Article
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Background China has the highest global prevalence of cigarette smokers, accounting for more than 40% of the total cigarette consumption in the world. Considering the shortage of smoking cessation services in China, and the acceptability, feasibility, and efficacy of mobile-phone-based text messaging interventions for quitting smoking in other coun...
Data
Individual-level data. (XLSX)
Data
Abstinence rates across the 3 groups at specified time points. *p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001. Self-reported abstinence was based on 7-day point prevalence (intention-to-treat). (TIF)
Data
Continuous abstinence rates across the 3 groups at 4 weeks, 12 weeks, and 24 weeks. *p < 0.05, **p < 0.01. Self-reported continuous abstinence at 4 weeks and 12 weeks and biochemically verified smoking cessation at 24 weeks. (TIF)
Data
The geographical distribution of participants in China. (DOCX)
Data
Baseline characteristics of study groups. (DOCX)
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Questions for assessing program acceptability. (DOCX)
Data
Continuous smoking abstinence and 7-day point prevalence (intention-to-treat): Combined intervention group versus control group. (DOCX)
Data
Kaplan–Meier analysis of time to relapse (at 1, 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, and 24 weeks). Participants in the intervention groups had higher probability of continuous abstinence than those in the control group, especially during the follow-up period. The definition of relapse is smoking at least 5 cigarettes after the quit date (Russell Standard definition...
Data
Program acceptability. (DOCX)
Preprint
Introduction Social isolation induces depressive-like behavior in animals and humans by impacting RNA editing, but the detailed mechanisms are still unknown. The purpose of this study was to explore how an ADAR1 (RNA-editing enzyme) inducer and inhibitor may impact the isolation-induced depressive-like behavior of mice and to identify new therapeut...
Preprint
Full-text available
Introduction Social isolation induces depressive-like behavior in animals and humans by impacting RNA editing, but the detailed mechanisms are still unknown. The purpose of this study was to explore how an ADAR1 (RNA-editing enzyme) inducer and inhibitor may impact the isolation-induced depressive-like behavior of mice and to identify new therapeut...
Article
Full-text available
Creativity is related to both cognition and emotion, which are the two major mental processes, interacting with each other to form psychological processes. Emotion is the major driving force of almost all creativities, sometimes in an unconscious way. Even though there are many studies concerning the relationship between creativity and cognition, t...
Article
Full-text available
Daniel Kahneman was not the first to suggest that attention and effort are closely associated, but his 1973 book Attention and Effort, which claimed that attention can be identified with effort, cemented the association as a research paradigm in the cognitive sciences. Since then, the paradigm has rarely been questioned and appears to have set the...
Article
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Introduction Social isolation enhances the aggressive behavior of animals, but the detailed mechanism remains unclear. Epigenetic studies have suggested that Htr2c RNA editing is closely related to aggressive behavior. This study aims to obtain a fundamental understanding of how social isolation impacts adenosine deaminase acting on RNA 1 (ADAR1, R...
Chapter
Cortisol is a stress hormone and exaggerated release of cortisol harms the brain and learning ability. When students have stress, they can not learn efficiently. When teachers have stress, they can not produce a positive learning environment and emotion, along with low-quality instruction and teaching capacity. This chapter focuses on the translati...
Chapter
It is known that individuals differ in how they learn and in learning-related brain networks. Growing evidence has indicated that standardized school settings and testing score evaluations may not fit everybody. This chapter discusses several factors that may contribute to individual learning and education outcomes, and explores how neuroscience-ba...
Chapter
The brain is wired to seek novelty and things that capture our curiosity over the lifespan. As a result, the brain is always open to information and maintaining its change and plasticity momentarily. In this chapter, we discuss how curiosity and creativity motivate self-learning and their underlying brain mechanisms. This chapter also summarizes re...
Chapter
Are you satisfied with your school experience? Could it be better? If you had a chance to restart your school time, what would you prefer to have? This chapter summarizes three major challenges and issues in education and also introduces a new interdisciplinary field—educational neuroscience—that applies the latest neuroscience findings into teachi...
Chapter
Human beings are social animals. Mentalization is the ability to understand the mental state of oneself or others that underlies behavior. Automatically and habitually, both mentalizing and self-related processing keep track of one’s and other’s beliefs, sensation, and action, which is mainly supported by the default mode network (DMN). In general,...
Chapter
The ability to attend and to exercise self-control or self-regulation is a vital aspect of human adaptability. Research indicates that those who have attention and self-control problems are more likely to have attention deficit, learning difficulties, poor cognitive performance, school failure, mood disorders, and antisocial behavior. This chapter...
Chapter
Traditionally, knowledge-based education focuses on academic performance such as standardized testing scores of math and literacy, but academic performance does not guarantee success in work and life, instead character-based education that focuses on the development of character strengths is more important. Just like a bird needs two wings to fly,...
Chapter
In Chapters 1–8, I have summarized principles and practice involved in brain-based learning and education. This chapter will further discuss several remaining topics related to optimal learning and education for future education.
Chapter
This chapter will discuss brain regions involved in learning and teaching, mainly including attention and self-control networks (e.g., anterior cingulate and adjacent prefrontal cortex, parietal cortex, striatum), memory networks (e.g., hippocampus, parietal cortex), emotion networks (e.g., prefrontal cortex, amygdala), reward and habit networks (e...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Using an extracellular medium with high potassium/low magnesium concentration with the addition of 4-AP we induced epileptiform activity in combined hippocampus/entorhinal cortex slices of the rat brain [1]. In this in vitro model of temporal lobe epilepsy, we observed the repeating sequences of interictal discharge (IID) regimes and seizure-like e...
Chapter
Many brain regions have been reported to be involved in different forms of mindfulness meditation. What is the function of each participating region? Do different forms of mindfulness meditation involve different brain networks? Do different practice stages recruit the same or distinct brain regions while practicing the same mindfulness technique?...
Chapter
There is much misunderstanding concerning learning and practicing mindfulness meditation. This chapter points out several common misunderstandings regarding mindfulness, and aims to provide readers with insight on how to learn and practice mindfulness efficiently. There are many ways of learning, but in general there are two types of learning strat...
Chapter
This chapter discusses future directions of the field of mindfulness, such as the from state to trait mindfulness, large-scale brain network dynamics in mindfulness, different stages of mindfulness and different states of practice, individual differences, the effects of combining mindfulness with other training regimens, and how to translate mindfu...
Chapter
This chapter aims to clarify what mindfulness meditation is, and to introduce the emerging field of Mindfulness Neuroscience, which can help individuals better understand the brain mechanisms underlying mindfulness and other mental states. This chapter will also point out the methodological challenges in the mindfulness field and the possible solut...
Chapter
Attention is indispensable to school performance and daily life. However, almost 50% of the time we are awake, our mind is wandering. We are not 100% focused on what we are doing in each moment. This chapter focuses on translational work of mindfulness meditation in cognitive and learning ability, as well as in education outcomes. I will take sever...
Chapter
Full-text available
Personality is the collection of characteristic thoughts, attitudes, feelings, and behaviors that impact how we view ourselves and what we believe about others and the world around us. In general, personalitytraits are relatively stable characteristics, but states are transient. Research has shown that our beliefs and attitudes are learned and shap...
Chapter
The ability to exercise self-control is a vital aspect of human adaptability, and fundamental to health and well-being. Problems associated with self-control deficiencies are common and are associated with diverse behavioral problems and mental disorders. This chapter focuses on the effects of mindfulness on health and mental disorders such as stre...
Chapter
In addition to brain changes, mindfulness meditation is also accompanied by ANS changes such as breath amplitude, heart rate, and skin conductance. Descriptions of mindfulness often emphasize mind or thought processes and the role of the body has often been ignored. In fact, body and mind can never be separated in mindfulness practice and daily lif...
Chapter
Although mindfulness meditation has shown beneficial effects on cognition, emotion, health, and brain plasticity, the relationship between brain mechanisms of mindfulness meditation and behavior change is not yet well-established. Does mindfulness help with behavior change, such as smoking cessation or weight loss? Building on the latest research,...
Book
Brain-Based Learning and Education presents a new type of education that uses brain-based and self-control theory-driven training. Leaving aside the current focus in education on content knowledge, it examines essential character strengths such as selfcontrol, persistence, creativity, attention, memory, and social learning, and relates their releva...
Article
Full-text available
Emerging evidences have shown that one form of mental training—mindfulness meditation, can improve attention, emotion regulation and cognitive performance through changing brain activity and structural connectivity. However, whether and how the short-term mindfulness meditation alters large-scale brain networks are not well understood. Here, we app...
Book
Full-text available
This book presents the latest neuroscience research on mindfulness meditation and provides guidance on how to apply these findings to our work, relationships, health, education and daily lives. Presenting cutting-edge research on the neurological and cognitive changes associated with its practice Tang aims to explain how it reaps positive effects a...
Chapter
Reasoning and decision-making, as an important aspect of a person's high-level cognition, may be influenced by cultural differences. For example, Asians tend to frame the decision to help as a matter of moral responsibility, whereas Americans are more likely to frame it as one's personal choice. In this chapter, we will discuss the cultural differe...
Article
Full-text available
It has been reported that social isolation stress could be a key factor that leads to cognitive deficit for both humans and rodent models. However, detailed mechanisms are not yet clear. ADAR1 (Adenosine deaminase acting on RNA) is an enzyme involved in RNA editing that has a close relation to cognitive function. We have hypothesized that social is...
Presentation
Full-text available
Presentation on "25th Annual Computational Neuroscience Meeting: CNS-2016 " BMC Neuroscience 17, 112-113 (2016).