Welcome to the Hawn Trauma, Resilience, & Comorbidities (TRAC) Lab!

The Hawn Trauma, Resilience, & Comorbidities (TRAC) lab at Old Dominion University (Director: Dr. Sage Hawn) conducts research focused on understanding how biological and behavioral factors interact to influence responses to trauma, ranging from resilience to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and comorbid conditions. The Hawn TRAC lab takes an translational approach to research, combining a variety of research methodologies including multivariate data analytic techniques (e.g., structural equation modeling, confirmatory factor analysis, latent class analysis), molecular genetics (e.g., polygenic risk, epigenetic aging), peripheral (blood-based) health-related biomarkers (e.g., inflammation, neuropathology), and behavioral outcomes (e.g., mental health phenotypes, substance use, nutrition, physical exercise). A specific focus of our work is to elucidating biological mechanisms underlying co-occurring trauma-related mental and physical health conditions. The ultimate goal of this work is to identify risk and protective factors that may predispose individuals to, or buffer against, trauma exposure and subsequent mental and physical health outcomes in order to inform early and integrative intervention efforts. Visit the About our Research section of our website to learn more!