Researcher

Keywords

Biography

I am interested in examining mechanisms that are involved in human behaviour and affective/cognitive processes, the relationships between these constructs, and how they affect emotional and developmental trajectories in both healthy and clinical populations. I completed my PhD on schizotypal personality at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, which focused on nonclinical individual differences that lead to differential behavioural and...view more

I am interested in examining mechanisms that are involved in human behaviour and affective/cognitive processes, the relationships between these constructs, and how they affect emotional and developmental trajectories in both healthy and clinical populations. I completed my PhD on schizotypal personality at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, which focused on nonclinical individual differences that lead to differential behavioural and neural manifestations (using fMRI, sMRI, and EEG). This was followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in experimental psychology/neuroscience at Ghent University, Belgium, where I examined the neural overlap between motivational and emotional processes using fMRI. I am now currently working in the Gatt Resilience Group based at Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA), examining the question of what makes some people more resilient to adversity compared to others. In particular, I am interested in how variability in mental wellbeing and resilience may be observed in the brain on both behavioural and neural levels across the lifespan, the psychosocial factors that contribute to such variability (e.g., personality traits, early life experiences), as well as genetic and environmental contributions (via examining twin populations).


My Grants

2019-2020 SWSLHD Clinical Knowledge Exchange Seed Funding Initiative 

2020 Instagram Wellbeing Research Award 

2019 Twins Registry Australia Travel Grant

2017 FWO Travel Grant, Research Foundation – Flanders (FWO), Belgium

2014 MRI Pilot Study Fund, Centre for Advanced MRI, The University of Auckland, New Zealand 

2011, 2012 AWCBR (Australasian Winter Conference on Brain Research) Travel Grants


My Qualifications

Senior postdoctoral fellow, Gatt Resilience Group, NeuRA, 2019 - current

Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Experimental Psychology, Ghent University, 2015 - 2019

PhD in Psychology, Cognitive Neuroscience Research Group, The University of Auckland, 2015

MSc in Psychology (First Class Hons), The University of Auckland, 2010


My Research Activities

My main research interests lie at the intersection of cognitive, clinical, and personality research domains using neuroimaging methods (structural and functional MRI). More specifically, I am interested in examining brain-behaviour relationships that underpin resilience to mental disorders, and the influence of behavioural and personality variables that may modulate such relationships. These may include cognitive and emotional factors, such as executive functioning and facial emotion processing, and personality factors, such as schizotypal personality.


My Research Supervision


Areas of supervision

PhD, Masters, ILP/Honours


Currently supervising

PhD: Arthur Montalto (2019 - ongoing)

Honours: Wenny Qu (2021), Malithi Silva (2021), Nitharsaa Ambalavanar (2022)

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Location

Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA)
Margarete Ainsworth Building, Barker Street, Randwick

Contact

+61 2 9399 1884