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Transforming the understanding
and treatment of mental illnesses.

Celebrating 75 Years! Learn More >>

Allison Nugent, PhD

Allison C Nugent, Ph.D.

Research Topics

Work in the MEG core facility focuses on the development of new methods and techniques for the study of brain activity with MEG, with the goal of providing state of the art tools to investigators across the NIH intramural research community. Current projects include:

  1. Demonstration of the feasibility of measuring deep brain sources with MEG, using novel tasks and beamforming methods
  2. Investigation of novel analysis techniques for the study of resting state MEG recordings, and the application of those techniques to patient samples
  3. Development of new software algorithms to enable more accurate MEG/MRI coregistration for increased accuracy of MEG source localization. Additionally, pursuing new algorithms to combine automated brain parcellation schemes with MEG source analysis techniques to enhance signal to noise
  4. Investigation of alternative means of measuring MEG signals other than traditional SQUID sensors



Dr. Nugent is the director of the NIMH Magnetoencephalography (MEG) Core Facility. She received her B.S. in Physics from Missouri State University, and her Ph.D. in physics from Duke University. Dr. Nugent has extensive experience in MRI, fMRI, DTI, MRS, PET, and MEG. Dr. Nugent has been at the NIH since 2001, first in the laboratory of Dr. Wayne Drevets, and more recently with Dr. Carlos Zarate. In both labs, Dr. Nugent applied neuroimaging technique to the study of mood and anxiety disorders. She has also focused on methods development, in both multimodal neuroimaging and MEG.

Selected Publications

Ketamine has distinct electrophysiological and behavioral effects in depressed and healthy subjects . Nugent AC, Ballard ED, Gould TD, Park LT, Moaddel R, Brutsche NE, Zarate CA Jr. Mol Psychiatry. ePub ahead of print 2018. PMID: 29487402.

Deriving frequency-specific spatial patterns in MEG-derived resting state sensorimotor network: A novel multiband ICA technique . Nugent AC, Luber B, Carver FW, Robinson SE, Coppola R, Zarate CA Jr. Human Brain Mapping. 2017; 38(2):779-791. PMID: 27770478.

Group differences in MEG-ICA derived resting state networks: Application to major depressive disorder . Nugent AC, Robinson SE, Coppola R, Furey ML, Zarate CA Jr. Neuroimage. 2015; 118:1-12. PMID: 26032890.

Synaptic potentiation and rapid antidepressant response to ketamine in treatment-resistant major depression: A replication study . Nugent AC, Wills KE, Gilbert JR, Zarate CA. Psychiatry Res – Neuroimaging. 2019; 283:64-66. PMID: 30551012.

Magnuson Clinical Center, Room 2D49A, MSC 1059

Phone: +1 301 451 8863