Prof. Vidita Vaidya on

Neuroscientist’s Guide to Managing Stress, Depression, and Emotions

Mental Health, Neuroscience

Share This

Prof. Vidita Vaidya

Prof. Vidita Vaidya is the Head and Principal Investigator of the Vaidya Lab at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai.

Prof. Vaidya (and by extension, her lab) is interested in:

  1. Understanding the Neurocircuitry of Emotion
  2. Its modulation by Life Experience and Mood Modulatory Drugs
  3. The alterations in Emotional Neurocircuitry that underlie Complex Psychiatric Disorders like Anxiety and Depression

She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Life-Science and Biochemistry from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. She holds a PhD in Neuroscience from Yale University and did her Post-Doctoral work at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the University of Oxford in the UK.

In 2015, she received the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology for notable and outstanding research, applied or fundamental, in the field of Medicine, from the Government of India.

When not in the lab, Vidita moonlights as an avid storyteller, frequent traveller, occasional salsa dancer, and a scientific outreach enthusiast.


This Episode is also available on: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Anchor.FM

Show Notes

On her childhood and early years [01:56]

Being inspired by Dian Fossey and Jane Goodall [04:01]

Education and learning experience at St. Xavier’s College [06:19]

Life-changing piece of advice from her father [07:58]

Steep learning curve at Graduate School [08:45]

The Pedagogical differences between the US and European Schools [10:30]

Coming home to TIFR [12:10]

Study of Emotions and interest in that area [13:34]

Talking about her lab and the research work she does [16:30]

Application of her research to real-life situations [19:20]

SARS-COV-2 Vaccine Example [21:31]

Correlation of Lifestyle Disorders and Brain Functioning [22:23]

The impact of early life experiences on the brain related to growth [26:40]

Critical Period for Learning and Stress Coping Responses [31:44]

How Stress Response Pathways are built [32:54]

Coping and building Stress Resistant Pathways[35:42]

Building a stress-free Indian Society [36:50]

Getting over Psychological Stressors in Children [39:26]

Importance of Play in building stress mechanisms in children under the ages of 10 to 15 [42:02]

Building a Nurturing Environment in Middle-Class Households [42:38]

Importance of enjoying what you do and mindset-shift in parents [47:11]

How do you measure the scope of a PhD? [48:38]

Developing Stress Coping Mechanisms in people who are a part of today’s workforce [49:45]

Rumination and how it impacts the Brain [52:05]

On what improves the production of Neurons in the Brain [55:00]

On what happens when you have more Neurons in the Brain [56:00]

Impact of taking Anti-Depressants [57:50]

On Continuous Learning[01:00:38]

Broad trends in Neuroscience and on how the field will transform [01:04:38]

Brain-Machine Interfaces, AI, and Machine Learning [01:08:54]

What would be the three pieces of advice Prof. Vaidya would give herself if she was 10 years old, today [01:09:42]

Share This

Prof. Vidita Vaidya

Neuroscientist’s Guide to Managing Stress, Depression, and Emotions

Pooja Jauhari is the former Group CEO of VMLY&R India, and former CEO of The Glitch. Over her two-decade-long career, Pooja has worked with some of the biggest brands in the country and the world, and introduced powerful campaigns to society.

Pooja has worked with some brilliant people and has held important responsibilities over the past 20 years. She is the Founder of Seat At The Table, an unbiased investment and advisory initiative to invest in companies and people that are built on a purpose.

Prior to her appointment in the VMLY&R network, Pooja was the CEO of The Glitch, a high-performance creative company that has worked hard to create a workspace that is gender blind, inclusive and progressive. The Glitch was acquired by WPP, the world’s largest marketing communications company in 2017, and integrated into the VMLY&R network within WPP in 2020.