People

Michael Ewbank
Research staff, Emotion group

Michael.Ewbank@mrc-cbu.cam.ac.uk
01223 273794
My research focuses on understanding the neural mechanisms that underlie the processing of social stimuli. I am particularly interested in the relationship between individual differences in personality traits the perception and processing of faces and other complex objects.

My expertise lies in using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to probe the response properties of brain regions involved in processing complex visual stimuli. In particular, I use a technique known as fMRI-adaptation (or repetition suppression). Adaptation is a ubiquitous property of all sensory systems and is characterised as a change in responsivity following repeated exposure to a stimulus. Despite its ubiquitous nature, there is little understanding of the mechanisms that underlie repetition suppression. My work investigates how changes in brain connectivity may underlie this phenomenon, and what this can tell us about the general mechanisms underlying brain function. I am also particularly interested in understanding how individual differences in repetition suppression are related to variation in autistic traits and face recognition abilities in both neurotypical and clinical populations.

A second strand of my research uses transcranial electrical brain stimulation (tES) as a method to enhance perception and learning.

Selected Publications

Holmes, J, Byrne, E, Gathercole, S, Ewbank, MP. (In Press). Transcranial random noise stimulation does not enhance the effects of working memory training. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience.

Pell, PJ, Mareschal, I, Calder, AJ, von dem Hagen, EH, Clifford, CWG, Baron-Cohen, S, Ewbank, MP. (In Press). Intact priors for gaze direction in adults with high-functioning autism spectrum conditions. Molecular Autism. .pdf

Ewbank, MP, von dem Hagen, EH, Powell, TE, Henson, RN & Calder, AJ. (In Press). The effect of perceptual expectation on repetition suppression to faces is not modulated by variation in autistic traits. Cortex .pdf

Ewbank, MP, Rhodes, G, von dem Hagen, EH, Powell T, Bright, N, Stoyanova, RS, Baron-Cohen, S & Calder, AJ. (2014). Repetition suppression in ventral visual cortex is diminished as a function of increasing autistic traits. Cerebral Cortex .pdf

Ewbank, MP, Henson,RN, Rowe, JB, Stoyanova RS, Calder AJ. (2013) Different neural mechanisms within occipitotemporal cortex underlie repetition suppression across same and different size faces. Cerebral Cortex, 23(5), 1073-1084 .pdf

Ewbank, MP, & Henson, RN. (2012). Explaining away repetition effects via Predictive Coding. Cognitive Neuroscience, 3, 239-240. .pdf

Ewbank, MP. (2011) Adaptation studies suggest interactive feedback shapes responses in occipitotemporal regions. Cognitive Neuroscience, 2, (3-4) 205-206. .pdf

Calder AJ, Ewbank, MP, Passamonti, L. (2011). Personality influences the neural response to viewing facial signals of emotion. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 366(1751) 1684-1701. .pdf

Ewbank, MP, Lawson, RP, Henson,RN, Rowe, JB, Passamonti, L, Calder AJ. (2011) Changes in 'top-down' connectivity underlie repetition suppression in the ventral visual pathway. Journal of Neuroscience, 31(15), 5635-5642. .pdf

Stoyanova RS, Ewbank, MP & Calder AJ. (2010) "You talkin' to me?": Self-relevant auditory signals influence perception of gaze direction. Psychological Science, 21(12), 1765-1769. .pdf

Ewbank MP, Fox E & Calder AJ. (2010) The interaction between gaze and facial expression in the amygdala and extended amygdala is modulated by anxiety. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 4(56). .pdf

Ewbank MP, Jennings C & Calder AJ. (2009) Why are you always angry with me? Facial expressions influence perception of gaze direction. Journal of Vision, 9(12), 1 -7. .pdf

Ewbank MP, Barnard PJ, Ramponi, C, Croucher CJ & Calder AJ. (2009) The amygdala response to images with impact. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 4, 127-133..pdf

Ewbank MP, Lawrence AD, Passamonti L, Keane J, Peers PV. & Calder, AJ. (2009) Anxiety predicts a differential neural response to attended and unattended facial signals of anger and fear. NeuroImage, 44, 1144-1151 .pdf

Ewbank MP & Andrews TJ (2008). Differential sensitivity for viewpoint between familiar and unfamiliar faces in human visual cortex. NeuroImage, 40, 1857-1870 .pdf

Ewbank MP, Smith WAP, Hancock ER, Andrews TJ (2008). The M170 reflects a viewpoint dependent representation for both familiar and unfamiliar faces. Cerebral Cortex, 18, 364-370 .pdf

Ewbank MP, Schluppeck D, Andrews TJ (2005). FMR-adaptation reveals a distributed representation of inanimate objects and places in human visual cortex, NeuroImage 28:268–279 .pdf

Andrews TJ, Ewbank MP (2004). Distinct representations for facial identity and changeable aspects of faces in human visual cortex, NeuroImage 23:905–913 .pdf

Show CBSU publications

EWBANK, M. , Pell, P., Mareschal,I., CALDER, A.J., VON DEM HAGEN, E.A., Clifford, C.W.G., Baron-Cohen, S. (2016) Intact priors for gaze direction in autism spectrum conditions, Molecular Autism, 7:25 [Open Access]

EWBANK, M. , VON DEM HAGEN, E., POWELL, T., CALDER, A. (2015) The effect of perceptual expectation on repitition suppression to faces is not modulated by variation in autistic traits, Cortex [Open Access]

EWBANK, M. , Rhodes, G., VON DEM HAGEN, E. POWELL, T., BRIGHT, N., Stoyanova, R., Baron-Cohen, S., CALDER, A.C. (2014) Repetition suppression in ventral visual cortex is diminished as a function of increasing autistic traits, Cerebral Cortex [Open Access]

Lefevere, C.E., EWBANK, M. P., CALDER, A.J., VON DEM HAGEN, E., Perrett, D.I. (2013) It is all in the face: Carotenoid skin coloration loses attractiveness outside the face, Biology Letters, 9(6), 20130633 [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., HENSON, R., ROWE, J.B., STOYANOVA, R.S. & CALDER, A.J. (2013) Different neural mechanisms within occipitotemporal cortex underlie repetition suppression across same and different-size faces., Cerebral Cortex, 23(5), 1073-1084 [Open Access]

Walsh, N.D., DALGLEISH, T., Dunn, V.J., Abbott, R., St Clair, M.C., Owens, M., Fairchild, G., Kerslake, W.S., Hiscox, L.V., Passamonti, L., EWBANK, M. , Ban, M., CALDER, A.J., Goodyer, I.M. (2012) 5-HTTLPR-environment interplay and its effects on neural reactivity in adolescents., NeuroImage, 63(3), 1670-1680 [Open Access]

MURPHY, F.C., EWBANK, M. P., CALDER, A.J. (2012) Emotion and personality factors influence the neural response to emotional stimuli, Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 35(3), 156-157 [Read More]

EWBANK, M. & HENSON, R.N. (2012) Explaining away repetition effects via Predictive Coding, Cognitive Neuroscience, 3(3/4), 239-240 [Read More]

Rhodes, G., Addison, B., Jeffery, L., EWBANK, M. , CALDER, A.J. (2012) Facial expressions of threat influence perceived gaze direction in 8 year-olds, PLoS One, 7(11), 49317 [Open Access]

EWBANK, M. P (2011) Adaptation studies suggest interactive feedback shapes responses in occipitotemporal regions., Cognitive Neuroscience 2(3-4), 205-206 [Read More]

STOYANOVA, R.S., EWBANK, M. P., CALDER, A.J. (2011) pSTS response to gaze reflects wider role in processing ostensive signals in multiple modalities, Annual meeting of the Vision Sciences Society, Naples, Florida, USA, May, 2011 [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., HENSON, R.N., ROWE, J.B. & CALDER, A.J. (2011) Different neural mechanisms underlie repetition suppression to facial identity for same-size and different-size faces in the occipitotemporal lobe, Annual meeting of the Vision Sciences Society, Naples, Florida, USA, May, 2011. [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., Lawson, R.P, HENSON, R.N., ROWE, J.B., Passamonti, L. & CALDER, A.J. (2011) Changes in 'top-down' connectivity underlie repetition suppression in the ventral visual pathway, Journal of Neuroscience, 31(15), 5635-5642. [Open Access]

CALDER, A.J. EWBANK, M. , & Passamonti, L. (2011) Personality Influences the Neural Responses to Viewing Facial Expressions of Emotion, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 366(1571), 1684-1701 [Open Access]

VON DEM HAGEN, E., Nummenmaa, L., RONGJUN, Y., Engel, A., EWBANK, M. & CALDER, A.J. (2011) Autism Spectrum traits in the typical population predict structure and function in the posterior superior temporal sulcus, Cerebral Cortex, 21(3), 493-500 [Open Access]

LAWSON, R.P., EWBANK, M. P., HENSON, R.N., CALDER, A.J. (2010) Does your EBA response to my bum look big? Differential sensitivity to body orientation in the extrastriate body area, Journal of Vision, 10(7), 686 [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., Fox, E., CALDER, A.J. (2010) The Interaction between gaze and facial expression in the amygdala and extended amygdala is modulated by anxiety., Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 4:56 [Open Access]

STOYANOVA, R., EWBANK, M. & CALDER, A.J. (2010) You talkin' to me? Self-relevant auditory signals influence perception of gaze direction, Psychological Science, 21(12), 1765-1769 [Open Access]

STOYANOVA, R., EWBANK, M. & CALDER, A.J. (2010) Auditory Self-Relevance and the Perception of Gaze, Meeting of the Experimental Psychology Society, Granada, Spain [Read More]

STOYANOVA, R., EWBANK, M. & CALDER, A.J. (2010) You Must Be Looking at Me: The Influence of Auditory Signals on the Perception of Gaze, Vision Sciences Society Meeting, Florida, USA [Read More]

STOYANOVA, R., EWBANK, M. & CALDER, A.J. (2009) Emotion perception from body, face & voice, International Society for Research on Emotion (Leuven, Belgium), August 2009 [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., Fox, E., CALDER, A.J. (2009) The role of eye gaze and anxiety on the amygdala response to angry and fearful faces., 3rd Annual Meeting of the Social and Affective Neuroscience Society, New York [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., Jennings, C., CALDER, A.J. (2009) Why are you angry with me? Facial expressions of threat influence perception of gaze direction., Journal of Vision, 9(12), 16, 1 -7 [Open Access]

VON DEM HAGEN, E., Beaver, J.D., EWBANK, M. P., KEANE, J., PASSAMONTI, L., Lawrence, A.D. & CALDER, A.J. (2009) Leaving a bad taste in your mouth but not in my insula, Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 4(4), 379-386 [Open Access]

VON DEM HAGEN, E., Nummenmaa, L., RONGJUN, Y., EWBANK, M. & CALDER, A.J. (2009) Autism Spectrum traits in healthy adults predict changes in structure and BOLD response in superior temporal sulcus, Sixteenth Cognitive Neuroscience Society Annual Meeting, F32 [Read More]

PASSAMONTI, L., ROWE, J.B., SCHWARZBAUER, C., EWBANK, M. P., , VON DEM HAGEN, E. & CALDER, A.J. (2009) Personality Predicts the Brain's Response to Viewing Appetizing Foods: The Neural Basis of a Risk Factor for Overeating, Journal of Neuroscience, 29(1), 43-51 [Open Access]

EWBANK, M. P., BARNARD, P.J., Croucher, C.J., RAMPONI, C. and CALDER, A.J (2009) The amygdala response to images with impact, Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 4(2), 127-133. [Open Access]

EWBANK, M. P., Lawrence, A.D., PASSAMONTI, L. KEANE, J., PEERS, P. & CALDER, A.J. (2009) Anxiety predicts a differential neural response to attended and unattended facial signals of anger and fear, NeuroImage, 44(3), 1144-1151 [Read More]

PASSAMONTI, L., ROWE, J.B., EWBANK, M. , HAMPSHIRE, A., KEANE, J. & CALDER, A.J. (2009) Connectivity from the ventral anterior cingulate to the amygdala is modulated by appetitive motivation in response to facial signals of aggression, NeuroImage, 15, 43(3), 562–570 [Open Access]

PASSAMONTI, L., ROWE, J.B., SCHWARZBAUER, C. & EWBANK, M. P. (2008) Visually induced appetite: Identifying the neural basis of a risk factor for overeating, 10th International Conference in Cognitive Neuroscience (ICON X) [Read More]

VON DEM HAGEN, E.A., Yu R., EWBANK, M. P. & CALDER, A.J. (2008) Autism quotient predicts variation in resting state brain activity in normal individuals, 10th International Conference in Cognitive Neuroscience (ICON X) [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., Lawrence, A.D., PASSAMONTI, L. KEANE, J. & Andrew J. Calder. (2008) The influence of attention and anxiety on the neural response to facial signals of fear and aggression, Experiment Psychology Society Meeting, Cambridge, April 2008 [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., Nummenmaa, L., CALDER, A.J. (2008) The role of eye gaze and anxiety on the amygdala response to angry and fearful faces, 10th International Conference in Cognitive Neuroscience (ICON X) [Read More]

CALDER, A.J., EWBANK, M. P., RAMPONI, C. & BARNARD, P.J. (2007) 'Visual impact’ predicts the amygdala response to emotional images, Proceedings of the 37th annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience [Read More]

EWBANK, M. P., Lawrence, A.D., PASSAMONTI, L., KEANE, J. & CALDER, A.J. (2007) Differential effects of anxiety and attention on amygdala response to facial signals of fear and aggression, Proceedings of the 37th annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience [Read More]

PASSAMONTI, L., ROWE, J., EWBANK, M. , ,KEANE, J., Fera, FERA. & CALDER, A.J. (2007) Individual variations in behavioural activation system (BAS) predict prefrontal cortex-amygdala coupling during emotional processing, Proceedings of the 37th annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience [Read More]

VON DEM HAGEN, E., Beaver, J.D., Lawrence, A.D, EWBANK, M. P. & CALDER, A.J. (2007) fMRI reveals two distinct neural substrates for the processing of facial expressions of ‘core’ and ‘human’ disgust, Proceedings of the 37th annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience [Read More]