People

Lab Members

Virginia Sturm, Ph.D.

Director

 

Virginia Sturm, PhD is the John Douglas French Alzheimer's Foundation Endowed Professor at UCSF. Dr. Sturm is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry and the director of the Clinical Affective Neuroscience Laboratory. After undergraduate work at Georgetown University, she received her PhD in clinical psychology at the University of California, Berkeley and completed her clinical internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco in neuropsychology. Her research focuses on identifying the neural systems that support emotion and social behavior in neurodegenerative disease and neurodevelopmental disorders.

 

Email: [email protected]

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Nathaniel Morris

Clinical Research Coordinator

Nathaniel comes from Marin County and graduated from Stanford in 2018 with a degree in psychology. At Stanford he worked as a research assistant in Dr. James Gross' lab studying the regulation of emotions in groups as well as the emotional dynamics between group members. Nathaniel also studied the effects of depression and anxiety on brain structures.

Email: [email protected]

 

 

Christina Veziris

Clinical Research Coordinator

Christina Veziris graduated from the University of San Francisco in 2018 with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and minors in Neuroscience and Health Studies. She volunteered in the CAN lab for a year and then worked in the Relationships, Emotions, and Health Lab at San Francisco State University for three years using the Facial Action Coding System to code facial emotions. In her last year at USF, she completed an honor’s thesis on the effects of culture on emotion recognition. Christina has been a research coordinator at the MAC since January 2019.

Email: [email protected]

 

Jacqueline Geyfen

Clinical Research Coordinator

Jacqueline Geyfen was born and raised in San Francisco. She graduated from UC Davis in June 2020 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Genetics and Genomics. During her time as an undergraduate, she worked as a research assistant in Dr. Stolzenberg's lab. Research in the lab was focused primarily on maternal behavior and the neural changes, as well as stimuli, that accompany this behavior. They studied alterations in neural pathways that take place in the transition from a non-maternal state to a maternal one.

Email: [email protected]

 

 

Ashlin Roy

Data Analyst

Ashlin earned his Bachelor of Science in psychology at the University of Oregon in 2016. As an undergraduate, he assisted several labs that study the neurobiological basis of behavior. After graduating, Ashlin worked as a lab manager at the University of Massachusetts Boston for Dr. Keith Welker and Dr. Rhiana Wegner. Currently, Ashlin is a data analyst at UCSF's Memory and Aging Center for Dr. Virginia Sturm and Dr. David Perry. He is interested in studying the neural substrates of affective and reward processes, as well as psychiatric disorders associated with deficits in these areas.

Email: [email protected]

Tiffany Chow

Postdoctoral Scholar

Tiffany Chow joined the CAN Lab as a postdoctoral scholar in 2018. She received her PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2017. Her graduate work assessed the neural correlates of episodic memory retrieval through the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging, transcranial direct current stimulation, and wearable camera technology. 

Email: [email protected]

Fatemeh Noohi

Postdoctoral Scholar

Fatemeh Noohi joined the CAN Lab as a postdoctoral scholar in September 2018. She completed her PhD in a dual degree program of Psychology & Kinesiology in the University of Michigan. Her graduate work was focused on using neuroimaging (fMRI) and non-invasive brain stimulation (GVS) techniques to assess the neural correlates of vestibular processing and multisensory integration in healthy older adults. In her current project in CAN lab she investigates the underlying neural substrates of emotional facial expressions in bvFTD patients.

Email: [email protected]

Eleanor Palser

Postdoctoral Scholar

Eleanor Palser joined the CAN lab in December 2018. Eleanor works with UCSF's Dyslexia Center, studying social and emotional processing in neurodevelopmental conditions, such as dyslexia and autism. To do this, she combines self-report, physiological and neuroimaging methods. Previously, she received a PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience from University College London. During her doctoral studies, she investigated the role of afferent bodily signals or "interoception" in several aspects of cognition and emotion, applying this to the clinical features of autism and anxiety. 

Email: [email protected]

Sladjana Lukic

Postdoctoral Scholar

Sladjana Lukic joined the CAN Lab as a postdoctoral scholar in July 2018. In 2016, she completed her PhD in Neurolinguistics at Northwestern University. Since then, she has been a postdoctoral scholar in the ALBA Lab. Her research focuses on brain-language relationships using functional and structural imaging techniques. She also investigates how social and emotional behavior relates to language processing by applying a multidisciplinary approach to the study of language disorders. In her current project within the CAN Lab, she investigates the neuroanatomical basis of emotion labeling, and whether individual differences in brain asymmetry relate to variability in emotion word knowledge.

Email: [email protected]

Lorenzo Pasquini

Postdoctoral Scholar

My overarching research interest is to elucidate the neural systems that support socioemotional function and to assess how these systems are impaired across neurological and psychiatric diseases. In order to improve our understanding in this field, the research community needs tools able to track the dynamic, nuanced interaction between the two systems that support human emotions and social behavior: the brain and the autonomic nervous system. Through my research, I strive to achieve a deep understanding of how functional brain organization and autonomic nervous system activity dynamically interact in order to shape social behavior and emotional experience in healthy, neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric populations.

Email: [email protected]

Alice Hua

Predoctoral Clinical Psychology Fellow

Alice Hua is a PhD candidate in clinical science at UC Berkeley and is completing her internship at UCSF. Her research has focused on emotional functioning (e.g., emotional reactivity and empathy) as a window to understand early changes in neurodegenerative disease and to identify familial caregivers at risk for poor mental health. Alice graduated from UC Berkeley with a bachelor's in psychology and is a former UCSF Memory and Aging Center research coordinator. 

Email: [email protected]

 

 

 

 

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Lab Alumni

Eena Kosik

 

Samir Datta

Isabel Sible

 

Nik Block

 

 

Jessica Zakrzewski, M.A.

 

Cassie Brown

 

 

Harika Reddy

 

Lily Gordon

 

Tracy Jerard

 

Kaitlin Johnson, Ph.D.

Samantha Wong

 

Oriel Fong