Chandan Vaidya, Ph.D., Principal Investigator

Chandan Vaidya, Ph.D. is a Professor in the Department of Psychology, Georgetown University and an investigator at the Children's Research Institute, Children's National Medical Center, Washington, DC. Her graduate training is in Developmental Psychology from Syracuse University and her post-doctoral training is in Cognitive Neuroscience from Stanford University.

Dr. Vaidya's research program is focused upon characterizing the functional neural architecture of adaptive mechanisms during the life span. Adaptive mechanisms promote goal-directed behaviors that allow us to adjust effectively to our environment. Her research focuses on two types of adaptive mechanisms - 1) Processes that require little effort such as learning from environmental regularities without intention or conscious awareness (termed implicit memory and learning); and 2) Processes that are effortful such as voluntary control over thoughts and actions (termed executive control). Further, her studies investigate how these adaptive mechanisms differ across individuals, particularly with respect to genetic functional polymorphisms of the dopamine system (e.g., DAT, COMT).

Her research involves multidisciplinary methods, comprising behavioral, neuropsychological, and structural and functional brain imaging. Studies include normally developing children and adults as well as those with developmental disorders such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).

Xiaozhen You, Ph.D., Post-Doctoral Fellow

Xiaozhen graduated from Florida International University in 2010 with a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering where she specialized in medical signal (EEG) and imaging (fMRI of language) analysis in pediatric populations with autism and epilepsy. She received her B.S. in Biomedical Engineering at Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 2005. Her post-doctoral work at Georgetown will involve fMRI and DTI analyses of attention and emotion in pediatric developmental disorders.

Eric Murphy, M.A., Graduate Psychology Student

Eric received his B.A. in Biopsychology from Oberlin College in 2003, and his M.A. in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago in 2004, and is currently a fourth-year pursuing a Ph.D. in the Lifespan Cognitive Neuroscience Program in the Psychology Department at Georgetown. His research at Georgetown will use functional neuroimaging techniques to study the interactions between emotion and attention regulation systems in autism and ADHD. He is particularly interested in studying the relationship between functional and structural connectivity in these systems.

Alaina Pearce, Graduate Psychology Student

Alaina graduated from the University of Minnesota Morris in 2011 with a B.A. in psychology and Spanish. Since graduating, she has worked as a research assistant in the Banich lab at the University of Colorado Boulder. This is her first year in the Lifespan Cognitive Neuroscience Program at Georgetown University. Her research interests include using functional neuroimaging techniques to study brain networks and executive control in young adults with ADHD.

Frank Fishburn, Graduate IPN Student

Frank graduated from the University of South Florida in 2010 with a B.A. in Psychology and a B.A. in Biochemistry. He is currently a third-year IPN student working on near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) as an alternative brain imaging modality. He is interested in studying atypical inter-regional brain communication and its effects on cognition.

Andrew Breeden, Graduate IPN Student

Andrew graduated from the University of Richmond in 2007 with a B.S. in Psychology. He is currently a second-year graduate student in Georgetown's Interdisciplinary Program in Neuroscience. Andrew is interested in using neuroimaging to study large-scale brain networks. He is also interested in using eye-traking techniques to study how the neurotransmitter norepinephrine influences these networks.

Charles Lynch, Graduate Psychology Student

Charles graduated from The Catholic University of America in 2011 with a B.A. in Psychology. After graduating he spent two years working as a research assistant in the Stanford Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Laboratory at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA. He will be joining the DCNL as a first year Ph.D. student in the Lifespan Cognitive Neuroscience Program at Georgetown University. His research interests include typical brain development and network approaches to understanding the brain basis of neurodevelopmental disorders. He is particularly interested in childhood autism spectrum disorder and plans to continue investigating altered brain systems in this population using multimodal neuroimaging methods (DTI & fMRI).

Ruth Ludlum, Lab Manager

Ruth graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park in 2013 with a B.S. in Psychology and a minor in Neuroscience. While at the University of Maryland, she worked as a undergraduate research assistant in the Developmental Social Cognitive Neuroscience Lab, and completed an honors research thesis on social cognition and memory. She now coordinates ongoing projects in the DCNL, including the lab's study of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. She hopes to later earn a graduate degree in Cognitive Neuroscience or Clinical Psychology.

Undergraduate Research Assistants

  • Joshua Loewenstern, Georgetown University, Class of 2014
  • Maciej Kietlinski, Georgetown University, Class of 2014

Lab Alumni

Ph.D. Students

  • Evan Gordon, Ph.D. - Received Ph.D. in 2012, currently a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at Washington University, St. Louis
  • Ericka Burgos-Ruiz, Ph.D. - Received Ph.D. in 2012, currently an Instructor at Johns Hopkins University in Rockville, MD
  • Melanie Stollstorff, Ph.D. - Received Ph.D. in 2010, currently a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Colorado, Boulder.
  • Kelly Barnes, Ph.D. - Received Ph.D. in 2008, completed a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at Washington University, St. Louis, currently at the National Institutes for Health in Bethesda, Maryland.

Undergraduate Students

  • Stephanie Crockett, Undergraduate Research Assistant
  • Deeksha Taneja, Undergraduate Research Assistant
  • Maxim Wheatley, Undergraduate Research Assistant
  • Rose Seidman, Undergraduate Research Assistant, Summer 2012
  • Michael Balsan, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2011-2012
  • Anila D'Mello, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2010-2012
  • Adam Fine, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2010-2011
  • Daniel Bercik, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2009-2011
  • Brisas Flores, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2010-2011
  • Helen Burton, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2009-2011
  • Andrew Malzberg, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2009-2010
  • Jane Dewire, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2008-2010
  • Nick Parrott, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2008-2009
  • Lindsay Anderson, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2008-2009
  • Stephanie Bean, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2006-2009
  • Michael Billington, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2006-2008
  • Colin Brody, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2006-2008
  • Joshua Henderson, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2006-2008
  • Brett Robinson, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2006-2008
  • Meg Benner, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2004-2006
  • Leslie Claracay, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2004-2005
  • Jonathan Gardner, Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2004-2005
  • Julie Balzano, Undergraduate Honors Thesis Student, 2003-2004
  • Marianne Huger, Undergraduate Research Assistant
  • Casey Hoffman, Undergraduate Research Assistant
  • Vanessa Rakaczky, Undergraduate Research Assistant
  • Rosie Gomez-Lobo, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Rotation Students

  • Andrew Breeden, Rotating IPN Student, 2011
  • Frank Fishburn, Rotating IPN Student, 2010
  • Lauren Pepe, Rotating IPN Student, 2010
  • Laurie Glezer, Rotating IPN Student, 2004
  • Elizabeth Lacey, Rotating IPN Student, 2004
  • Sylvie Song, Rotating IPN Student, 2004

Post-Doctoral Fellows

  • Philip Lee, Ph.D. - Currently a third-year student at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Lab Staff

  • Megan Norr, Lab Manager, 2011-2013
  • Stephanie Bean, Lab Manager, 2009-2011
  • Devon Shook, Lab Manager and Research Assistant, 2006-2010
  • Jen Foss-Feig, Lab Manager, 2004-2006
  • Mara Fleischer, Research Assistant, 2004-2005
  • Lauren Kaplan, Lab Manager, 2003-2004
  • Sarah Noonan, Lab Manager, 2001-2003

Collaborators

Children's National Medical Center

  • William Gaillard, M.D.
  • Laura Kenealy, Ph.D.
  • Lauren Kenworthy, Ph.D.
  • Ben Yerys, Ph.D.

Georgetown University

  • Darlene Howard, Ph.D.
  • Barbara Schwartz, Ph.D.

University of Illinois at Chicago

  • Mark Stein, Ph.D.
  • Ed Cook, M.D.

Catholic University of America

  • James Howard, Ph.D.

Stanford University

  • Vinod Menon, Ph.D.