Dr Chris Chandler is Head of Psychology at London Met. Chris is a psychobiologist and came to London Met from the Institute of Psychiatry in 1996. He has previously been course leader for undergraduate programmes and postgraduate programmes in psychology and mental health.
Chris's research interests are primarily in the neuropsychology of addiction, but also in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). He has supervised PhD students in these areas.
Chris specialises in psychobiology, addiction and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). His research interests are addiction psychology and drug use and ADHD.
Chris has supervised the following students on their PhD:
- Dr Lynn Taurah – A cohort study of the acute and long-lasting psychological effects of 3, 4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, ‘Ecstasy’) during the period 2002-2007
- Dr Anita Singh-Andrews – Information processing of auditory and visual nicotine cues in smokers, ex-smokers and non-smokers.
- Dr Sharon Cox – The effect of alcoholism on visuospatial perspective taking
- Dr Jo Lusher – Vulnerability to substance dependence
Chris has also worked on various projects:
The effects of the ovulatory cycle on the neuropsychology of drug-taking behaviour
It has been noted that the week preceding menstruation is a period (forgive the pun) in which women may be more vulnerable to drug consumption and relapse. This project seeks to investigate the potential relationship between addiction behaviours (craving and neuropsychological factors) and the hormonal/behavioural changes during the menstrual cycle.
The neuropsychology of impulsivity and attentional bias in drug users
This project is aimed to determine the relationship between impulsivity as measured by tasks of behavioural inhibition (e.g. Go-Nogo task) and the link of the well-known phenomenon of attentional bias. By modifying traditional behavioural inhibition tasks with integral attentional bias we aim to determine the impact of attention on impulsivity in drug users. We are continuing to evaluate behavioural inhibition against working memory as an endophenotype for addiction.
Pro-social Behaviours and Theory of Mind in Alcohol users
Whilst it is understood that addiction has detrimental effects on pro-social behaviour, the specific effect that addiction has on a range of socially important behaviours is relatively unknown. Functional socialisation is not only a consequence of - and necessary for - one’s own affect regulatory state, but also for maintaining cohesion within society. During addiction, one develops an acute awareness of drug-related objects, perhaps at the expense of pro-social behaviour. This project seeks to understand the nature of pro-social behaviour in alcohol users and how they process social cues (eg theory of mind). This was a collaborative project with Dr Sharon Cox (University of Kent) and Dr Kevin Riggs (University of Hull).
Dopamine Receptors and Behaviour
This research focused on identifying a behavioural role for the Dopamine D1 receptor. The work here has identified a facility role for the receptor, together with the dopamine D2 receptor on motor behaviour. The significance of this work relates directly to diseases such as schizophrenia, Parkinson's disease, ADHD and addiction. Additionally, this work discovered a potential link between the level of receptor activity and motor seizures.
Dopamine Receptors and Behaviour
- Chandler C.J., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1989). Behavioural interactions of the D1 dopamine antagonist SCH 23390 with the D2 antagonists metoclopramide and sulpiride in non habituated mice. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 3, 69P.
- Chandler C.J., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1990). Differential behavioural interactions between the dopamine D1 antagonist SCH 23390 and the dopamine D2 receptor antagonists metoclopramide and sulpiride in non habituated mice. Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, 35, 285 289.
- Al Tajir G., Chandler C.J., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1990). Opposite effects of D1 and D2 dopamine receptor stimulation on the expression of motor seizures in mice and rats. Neuropharmacology, 19, 657 661.
- Al Tajir G., Starr M.S., Chandler C.J. and Starr B.S. (1990). Opposing effects of dopamine D1 and D2 receptor stimulation on the propagation of motor seizures in mice and rats. British Journal of Pharmacology, 99, 261P.
- Chandler C.J., Wohab W., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1990). Motor depression: A new role for D1 receptors? Neuroscience, 38, 437 445.
- Burke K., Chandler C.J., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1990). Seizure promotion and protection by D1 and D2 dopaminergic drugs in the mouse. Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behaviour, 36, 729 733.
- Chandler C.J., Starr B.S., and Starr M.S. (1991). Behavioural interactions of clozapine and SCH 23390 with benzamide neuroleptics in non habituated mice. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 6, 117P.
- Chandler C.J., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1992). Behavioural Effects of the specific D1 antagonist SCH 39166. Journal of Psychopharmacology, A65.
- Starr B.S., Munro I., Patel B. and Chandler C.J. (1992). A method for estimating memory impairment in the mouse using naturally occurring exploratory behaviour. Journal of Psychopharmacology, A55.
- Chandler C.J., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1992). D1 like inhibition of mouse locomotion by clozapine. Pharmacology Communications, 2, 345 351.
- Starr M.S., Chandler C.J. and Starr B.S. (1992). Dopamine and Epilepsy A problem overlooked? Paper presented to the European Winter Conference on Brain Research, La Plagne, France. March.
- Chandler C.J., Starr B.S. and Starr M.S. (1992). Clozapine and multiple dopamine receptors: A behavioural investigation into the importance of D1 and D2 receptor sites. Paper presented to the European Winter Conference on Brain Research, La Plagne, France. March.
- Chandler C.J., and Stolerman I.P. (1994). The discriminative stimulus effects of cytisine in the rat. Behavioural Pharmacology, 5 (Suppl. 1), 113.
- Chandler C.J., Garcha H.S. & Stolerman I.P. (1995). Morphine and amphetamine, but not nicotine, produce conditioned place preferences in the rat. Journal of Psychopharmacology (suppl), 9, A52.
- Chandler C.J., Garcha H.S., Newton J.M. & Stolerman I.P. (1996) Behavioural pharmacology of the nicotinic agonist epibatidine. Behavioural Pharmacology, 7 (suppl 1), 14
- Chandler C.J. and Stolerman I.P. (1997). The discriminative stimulus properties of the nicotinic agonist cytisine. Psychopharmacology, 129, 257-264.
- Stolerman I.P., Chandler C.J., Garcha H.S. & Newton J.M. (1997) Selective antagonism of behavioural effects of nicotine by dihydro-beta-erythroidine in rats. Psychopharmacology, 129, 390-397.
- Mirza N.R., Chandler C.J. & Stolerman I.P. (1997) Cholinergic antagonists induce a selective impairment in a compound discrimination tasks. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 11 (Suppl), A65.
- Kanyt L, Stolerman I.P, Chandler C.J, Saigusa T, Pogun S (1999) Influence of sex and female hormones on nicotine-induced changes in locomotor activity in rats. Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behaviour, 62:179-87.
- The work on MDMA is ongoing with LynnTaurah. Whilst the short term euphoric effects and side effects are known, this work is using large samples to elucidate possible long term effects of MDMA use in a number of populations. Cheeta.S.K & Chandler.C.J. (1998) The role of environmental context in locomotor sensitization to MDMA. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 12 (Suppl A), A9.
- Jansen KLR, Darracott-Cancovic R, Chandler C, Theron L (2003) Schizotypy and memory deficits linked with ketamine dependence. The Journal of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology, 13, Suppl. 4, pS424
- Taurah L and Chandler C (2003) Elevated depression scores following abstinence from MDMA. Addiction Biology, 8, 244-245.
- Taurah and Chandler, Nov 2002. Long lasting self-reported depression in abstained MDMA users. Platform presentation, Royal College Psychiatrists annual meeting Leeds.
- Taurah and Chandler, March 2003. Single dose of ecstasy causes increased levels of self-reported depression. Platform presentation, Annual BPS meeting, Bournemouth.
- Taurah, Heslin, Pal, Chaudhuri, and Chandler; June 2004. Long lasting sleep disturbance in MDMA users. Platform presentation, Annual BPS meeting, London.
- Heslin, M, Taurah, L, Pal, S, Chaudhuri, K.R. & Chandler, C. (2004). 3,4- methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA/ecstasy) exposure targets particular dimensions of depression. Annual Symposium for the Society for the Study of Addiction. (Abstract only).
- Taurah, Heslin, and Chandler. Nov 2004. Increased self-reported somatic factors for current and ex-MDMA users. Platform presentation, Royal College of Psychiatrists annual meeting, York.
- Taurah, Heslin, and Chandler;. Increased impulsivity scores for abstained and current MDMA users. Platform presentation, Annual BPS meeting, March 2005.
- Heslin, M, Taurah, L, & Chandler, C. (2005). 3,4-Methylenedioxymetamphetamine (MDMA/ecstasy) exposure targets cognitive dimensions of depression. Annual BPS meeting, April. (Abstract only).
- Taurah, L, Pal, S, Heslin, M, Chaudari, R. & Chandler, C. (2005). A cross-sectional study of extrapyramidal and psychomotor symptoms in recreational users of 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA/Ecstasy). British Neuroscience Association Abstracts, 18, p24.05.
- Taurah, L, Heslin, M, & Chandler, C. (2005). Long-lasting effects of MDMA on impulsivity. Annual BPS meeting, April. (Abstract only).
- Taurah, Pal and Chandler, (2006). Fine motor impairment in ex-recreational users of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). Association of British Neurologists.
- Taurah, Pal and Chandler (2006). An investigation of fine motor impairment in recreational users of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). European Neurological Society (Abstracts).
- Taurah L, Chandler CJ and Heslin M The possible persistent effects of 3'4'Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, ecstasy) on self reported levels of depression. In preparation for Psychopharmacology
- Taurah, Sandhu and Chandler, (2009). The long lasting effects of MDMA on memory. Platform Presentation, British Psychological Society Biopsychology Division.
- Taurah and Chandler, (2010). The long lasting effects of MDMA on executive functioning. Platform Presentation, British Psychological Society Biopsychology Division.
- Taurah and Chandler, (2010). The long lasting effects of MDMA on executive functioning. Poster presentation, British Psychological Society Biopsychology Division.
- Taurah, Pal and Chandler (2010). Fine motor impairment in past and present MDMA user. Platform Presentation, British Psychological Society Biopsychology Division.
Addiction and Stimulus Control
- Dr Chandler, Joanne Lusher and David Ball have undertaken work to understand the genetic and neuropsychological implications of addiction. This work is ongoing.
- Taurah, Lusher, Chandler, June 2000. Visual Alcohol Cues influence smoking stroop performance. Poster presentation annual BPS meeting Sheffield.
- Lusher J.M., Chandler C.J. and Ball D (2001) Dopamine D4 Receptor gene (DRD4) is associated with Novelty seeking (NS) and substance abuse: the saga continues. Molecular Psychiatry, 6, 497-499.
- Lusher J, Chandler C and Ball D (2004) Alcohol dependence and the alcohol Stroop paradigm: evidence and issues. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 75, 225-231.
- Lusher J, Chandler C and Ball D (2004). DRD4 & Cue Reactivity in Substance Abusers. Beyond Nature and Nurture - European Foundation for Psychiatry at the Maudsley. Poster presentation.
- Chandler CJ and Diri B (2006) Recognition of degraded smoking-related images in smokers and non-smokers. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 20(5), A48
- Lusher, J., Chandler, C., and Ball, D., (2009). The DRD4 gene influences attentional bias in heroin abusers and cigarette smokers. The Open Addiction Journal, 2 (6), 6-11.
- Lusher J, Chandler C and Ball D (2006). A Contemporary Investigation into Vulnerability Factors of Alcoholism: A Distinct Substance of Abuse. In Trends in Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Research. Nova Science Publishers, Inc. NY.
- Lusher J, Chandler CJ and Ball D (submitted)The Dopamine D4 receptor gene (DRD4) influences attentional bias in heroin abusers and cigarette smokers. Molecular Psychiatry
- Chandler CJ, Andrews A, Perez M and Taurah L (submitted) Attentional bias for aurally presented drug cues in smokers, Drug and Alcohol Dependence
- Taurah, Sandhu and Chandler, (2009). The similarities between gamblers, Facebook users and smokers. Poster Presentation, British Psychological Society Biopsychology Division
Dr Chris Chandler
Head of Psychology