Laura Cabrera

Laura Cabrera photo

Assistant Professor

Center for Ethics and Humanities in the Life Sciences

Department of Translational Neuroscience

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy
Faculty Affiliate, College of Law
Faculty Affiliate, Neuroscience Program, College of Natural Science
Faculty Affiliate, National Core for Neuroethics at University of British Columbia
Faculty Affiliate, Socially Engaged Philosophy of Science, College of Arts & Letters

C-211 East Fee Hall
(517) 355-7553
cabrer22 @

PhD 2012 Charles Sturt University
MA 2008 Linköping Universitet
MA 2007 Linköping Universitet
BS 2005 Instituto Technologico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey

Curriculum Vitae
MSU Scholars Profile
Research Gate Profile


Laura Cabrera's interests focus on the ethical and societal implications of neurotechnology and neuroscientific advances. She has been working on projects that explore the media coverage and the attitudes of the general public toward pharmacological and neuromodulation interventions for the treatment of psychiatric disorders. She has also worked on the public perceptions toward the use of different modalities of neuromodifiers for enhancement purposes, as well as their normative implications.

Her current work also focuses on Latinos’ views about Alzheimer's disease, as well as the timing of deep brain stimulation in Parkinson's disease.

Current Research Projects

Selected Publications

Cabrera LY. A human rights approach to low data reporting in clinical trials of psychiatric deep brain stimulation. Bioethics. Epub August 13, 2019. DOI: 10.1111/bioe.12648.

Emerging Issues Task Force, International Neuroethics Society [Kellmeyer P, Chandler J, Cabrera L, Carter A, Kreitmair K, Weiss A, Illes J]. Neuroethics at 15: The Current and Future Environment for Neuroethics. AJOB Neuroscience. July 2019;10(3):104-110. DOI: 10.1080/21507740.2019.1632958.

Cabrera LY, Sadle C, Purcell E. Neuroethical considerations of high-density electrode arrays. Nature Biomedical Engineering. August 2019;3:586-589. Epub May 20, 2019. DOI: 10.1038/s41551-019-0407-2.

Cabrera LY, Brandt M, McKenzie R, Bluhm R. Online comments about psychiatric neurosurgery and psychopharmacological interventions: Public perceptions and concerns. Social Science & Medicine. January 2019;220:184-192. PMID: 30453110. DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2018.11.021.

Cabrera LY, Goudreau J, Sidiropoulos C. Critical appraisal of the recent US FDA approval for earlier DBS intervention. Neurology. 2018. Available online June 13, 2018. PMID: 29898975. DOI: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000005829.

Cabrera LY. Rethinking Human Enhancement: Social Enhancement and Emergent Technologies. London: Palgrave Macmillan; 2015.

Cabrera LY, Reiner PB. Understanding public (mis)understanding of tDCS for enhancement. Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience. April 2015;9(30). DOI: 10.3389/fnint.2015.00030.


Cabrera LY, Fitz NS, Reiner PB. Reasons for comfort and discomfort with pharmacological enhancement of cognitive, affective, and social domain. Neuroethics. August 2015;8(2):93-106. DOI: 10.1007/s12152-014-9222-3.

Selected Achievements and Awards

  • 2020-2023: Member, International Neuroethics Society Board of Directors
  • 2018 College of Human Medicine Teacher-Scholar Award. Read More
  • 2018-2022: National Institutes of Health BRAIN Initiative grant award (PI: Laura Cabrera), Is the Treatment Perceived to be Worse than the Disease?: Ethical Concerns and Attitudes towards Psychiatric Electroceutical Interventions. Read More
  • 2018-2019: National Institute on Aging grant award (MSU PI: Laura Cabrera), Latinos Perceptions and Concerns about Alzheimer Disease. Read More
  • 2016-2018: International Neuroethics Society Response Action Task Force.
  • 2016-2017: Michigan State University Science and Society at State Collaborative Grant Award, (PI: Laura Cabrera. Co-PIs: Robyn Bluhm, Mark Reimers), Psychiatric Interventions: Values and Public Attitudes. Read More
  • 2014: Abstract Award: Travel stipend for the International Neuroethics Society Annual Meeting and abstract, “Substantive Discrepancies Between Academic and Public Concerns Regarding the Ethics of Neuroenhancement” (INS Abstract # 78).
  • 2013: Brocher Foundation. Visiting research fellowship at the Brocher Foundation on the project ‘Legal and ethical issues around animal-human chimera research (the case of human neuro-related material use in non-human primates).’
  • 2011: Singularity University Graduate Student Program Grant (June-August).