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Our emotions determine the significance of life events, direct our attention to salient stimuli, and guide our behaviors along the path toward desired goals. However, when carried to an extreme, emotional experiences become debilitating, impacting daily functioning on a level comparable to physical illness. My research program explores the biological pathways that give rise to the diversity of emotional experiences, with a particular focus on the intersection of emotion and cognition. A core motivation that drives this work is the identification of specific neurogenetic signatures associated with individual differences in emotional responsivity and the presence of affective illnesses such as major depressive disorder.