Research Projects

We are currently working on the following projects.

Dynamics of memory encoding and retrieval networks in the brain

The encoding and retrieval processes of episodic memory overlap in neural substrates. For example, the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex are active during both encoding and retrieval. Regions of the default network, however, show opposite activation patterns during encoding and retrieval. We are investigating the interplay of the core memory network and the default network during encoding and retrieval across individuals and during development. 

Development of episodic and semantic memory networks in the brain

Episodic memory (memory for events) develops slowly compared to semantic memory (memory for facts).  Episodic and semantic memory are supported by different functional networks in the brain, possibly anchored by different subregions in the medial temporal lobe (MTL).  Behavioral and lesion evidence suggest that episodic and semantic processing interact with each other. We are investigating how the episodic memory network and semantic network interact to support episodic and semantic memory in the brain and how they develop from children to adults.

Development of memory strategies

Children tend to use relatively simple and shallow encoding strategies such as memorize the appearance and sound of the item or word. We are investigating whether training children to use deep encoding strategies can result in a higher gain in memory performance compared to adults. In addition, we are examining whether children activate the same network of brain regions when applying deep encoding strategies as adults.  

Brain network disruption in aphasia

In a group of post-stroke patients with language difficulties, we are trying to understand the clusters of cognitive deficits and the brain correlates of such deficits, by investigating damage to the critical brain regions and disruption in brain connectivity that cause such deficits.