Perception and Pharmacology Laboratory

Group Leader Email Number Webpage
A/Prof Olivia Carter +61 3 8344 4225 View page

Research Overview

The majority of the research in the lab focuses on two questions

- How does the brain's natural chemicals control complex behaviours, thoughts and perceptions?

- What are the factors that determine the contents of an individual's conscious experience?

These questions are explored both from the perspective of understanding the underlying neurobiological mechanisms involved and also in respect to the neuroethical issues associated with advances in neuroscientific knowledge and drug/technology development.

More information regarding the research conducted in the lab can be found at the external Pharmacology and Perception lab webpage


  • Virginia Liu, Post-Doc
  • Jody Stanley, PhD Student
  • Anna Antinori, PhD Student
  • Hayley Darke, PhD Student
  • Rachael Hadoux, PhD Student
  • Toby Woods, PhD Student


Australian Research Council

Research Publications

A full list of publications and PDF's for download are available at the external Pharmacology and Perception lab webpage


1.Carter. O., Bennett. D., Nash. T., Arnold. S., Brown. L., Cai. R. Y., Allan. Z., Dluzniak. A., McAnally. K., Burr. D. and Sundram. S. (2017) Sensory integration deficits support a dimensional view of psychosis and are not limited to schizophrenia. Translational Psychiatry 7(5) e1118

2. Carter, O. & Forte, J. (2016) Brain Stimulation Needs Regulation. Nature 533: 179

3. Horvath, J., Forte, J. & Carter, O. (2015) Quantitative Review Finds No Evidence of Cognitive Effects in Healthy Populations from Single-Session Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS). Brain Stimulation. 8: 535-550

4. Stoll, J., Chatelle, C., Carter, O., Koch, C., Laureys, S. & Einhauser, W. (2013) Pupil responses allow communication in locked-in syndrome patients. Current Biology. 23(15) R647-8

5. Kometer, M., Cahn, B., Andel, D., Carter, O. & Vollenweider, F.  (2011) The 5-HT2A/1A agonist psilocybin disrupts modal object completion associated with visual hallucinations. Biological Psychiatry. 69(5): 399-406

6. Carter, O., Konkle, T., Wang, Q., Hayward, V. & Moore, C. (2008) Tactile apparent motion induces perceptual rivalry Current Biology 18(4):1050-54

7. Einhäuser, W., Stout, J., Koch, C. & Carter, O. (2008) Pupil dilation reflects perceptual selection and predicts subsequent stability in perceptual rivalry. Proc Natl Acad Sci 105(5): 1704-1709

8. Carter, O., Burr, D. C., Pettigrew, J. D., Wallis, G. M., Hasler, F. & Vollenweider, F. X. (2005) Using psilocybin to investigate the relationship between attention, working memory and the Serotonin1A/2A receptors. J Cog Neuroscience 17(10): 1497-150.

9. Carter, O., Presti, D., Callistemon, C., Liu, G. B., Ungerer, Y. & Pettigrew, J. D. (2005) Meditation Alters Perceptual Rivalry in Tibetan Buddhist Monks. Current Biology 15(11): R412-3.

10. Carter, O., Pettigrew, J. D., Hasler, F. & Wallis, G. M., Liu, G. B., Hell, D., & Vollenweider, F. X. (2005) Modulating the rate and rhythmicity of perceptual rivalry alternations with the mixed 5-HT2A and 5‑HT1A agonist psilocybin. Neuropsychopharmacology 30: 1154-62

Research Projects

This Research Group doesn't currently have any projects

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Cognitive Psychology and Behavioural Neuroscience

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact A/Prof Olivia Carter

Department / Centre

Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences

Unit / Centre

Perception and Pharmacology Laboratory