Dr Ben Seymour, Computational and Biological Learning Lab, Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1PZ


Center for Information and Neural Networks, National Institute for Information and Communications Technology (NICT), 1-3 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871, Japan.

bjs49 AT / seymour AT

F1000 reviews (paywall)



Post-doc position at CBL, Cambridge from 2015

There's likely to be a position for a post-doc in my lab at CBL Cambridge from approx April 2015, funded by the Wellcome Trust. Informal enquiries welcome. 


Uncertainty increases pain

Check out our new paper: - free online at the Journal of Neuroscience.

Placebo and nocebo effects are well known - and describe how predictions bias experience of pain. In a nutshell, we show that if those predictions are more uncertain, this uncertainty increases pain independently of the bias induced by the basic placebo / nocebo effect. This effect is correlated with fMRI BOLD activity in the PAG.

Uncertainty increases pain: evidence for a novel mechanism of pain modulation involving the periaqueductal gray. Yoshida W, Seymour B, Koltzenburg M, Dolan RJ. J Neurosci. 2013 Mar 27;33(13):5638-46. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.4984-12.2013. PMID: 23536078


Post-doc position coming up soon

There's a possibility of a new post-doc / research associate position being available here (in Japan) later in the year. It would involve using fMRI and brain decoding methods to study pain, and a collaboration with colleagues at ATR.

If you're interested, please write to me at




BMI Osaka

BMI Osaka is the worlds first dedicated symposium on the clinical - translational aspects of brain-machine interfaces, organised by Toshiki Yoshimine from CiNet.


Do politicians need brains?

Recently there's been quite a lot of interest of the potential role of neuroscience in informing public policy, and some quite big names have weighed into the discussion - the Royal Society for instance. But is it all yet more neurobabble, with a few fame-hungry neuroscientists getting lofty political ambitions, and politicians trying to attach scientific credulity to dodgy policies? Here's our short take on the subject - with special focus on 'behavioural change' policies (aka. Nudges).