Individualised Diagnostics & Rehabilitation of Attention Disorders
Issue 3
March 2017
In this newsletter:
   First PhD defense: Katharina Glomb
   ATC6: Dublin
Honours, awards and grants
First PhD defense: Katharina Glomb

Many congratulations to Dr Katharina Glomb, the first INDIREA ESR to obtain her PhD! According to Katharina's supervisor Gustavo Deco (Pompeu Fabra University) she has shown great efficiency, creativity and development of new ideas during her project. Undoubtedly Katharina has a very successful scientific career ahead of her, and we wish her all the best in the future! 
Katharina: "As the first ESR to get started in the INDIREA programme, it is only fair that I should also be the first one to finish. I handed in my thesis about dynamic functional connectivity in spontaneous brain activity in October and defended in January. It was possibly one of the weirdest days of my life. The defense itself took place at 11am in front of a committee of three people which had been kind enough to read the whole thesis - Matthieu Gilson from my own lab, Mavi Sanchez-Vives from IDIBAPS in Barcelona, and Petra Ritter from the Charite University Medicine in Berlin. It took me until late in the evening to realize what had just happened and that I was really done; right after the defense, I was just exhausted and relieved. 
In my thesis, I explored how communication between brain regions on a global level changes over time, and how to best describe the dynamics of these changes. The goal was not only to develop tools that could help to compare different brain states, patient groups, or tasks in terms of their dynamics, but also to contribute to our understanding of the brain as a dynamical system. I was very lucky to have Gustavo Deco as a supervisor and be part of INDIREA because I had lots of freedom while at the same time I was not alone at all. The INDIREA training camps were definitely highlights of my PhD, as was my research stay at RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Japan. I feel that apart from learning a lot of science during the last three years, I now also have a much better idea of why I'm doing research, and hope that I can keep doing it, at least for the time being. In my postdoc, I'd like to look at data recorded with methods like EEG or ECoG additionally to fMRI, in order to connect different temporal and spatial scales, and I'd like to directly explore the relationship between spontaneous and task-evoked brain activity."
ATC6: Dublin
Edwin Dalmaijer

The INDIREA network met in Dublin in May 2016, to share knowledge on cutting-edge techniques in brain monitoring and stimulation. Researchers from Trinity College Dublin presented their most important and recent findings, and highlighted some of the possibilities that electroencephalography (EEG) provides through advanced statistical modelling and related techniques.
The final talk in this series was an honest and somewhat sobering investigation of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) that focussed on the extent to which these techniques can actually affect neuronal activity. The next day, all PhD students in the network gave 10-minute talks on their most interesting findings to date.
In addition to the scientific content, a full day of career training was organised for the PhD students in the network. The absolute highlight was an interactive session on grant writing, provided by INDIREA PI Masud Husain from the University of Oxford, during which he gave writing tips and shared some of his insider-knowledge on how committees assign funding to grant applications.

As per usual, the meeting also gave us the opportunity to informally discuss work (and personal life), and many new studies were conceived over drinks in a local pub. Fortunately, at least some of those turned out to still be great ideas the next morning.
Patient party
Ellie Slavkova

The Cognitive Neuropsychology Centre at Oxford held a New Year's Party on 13th January in the Department of Experimental Psychology. Over 80 of our regular stroke, dementia and Parkinson's disease patients attended, together with healthy volunteers who take part in research in the CNC. Juan Galeazzi, a Postdoctoral Researcher, performed 2 beautiful songs on the guitar and his wife Laura Monroy, who left her position as CNC Receptionist for a PhD position in London, did a breath-taking flamenco dance. After lunch and some drinks, there was a battle over the first place in the organized quizz with 3 teams splitting the 1st place. The party was a great success in bringing together researchers, patients and volunteers.
Honours, appointments and grants
Congratulations to Kia Nobre (Oxford), who has been appointed Head of Department of Experimental Psychology at Oxford, as well as Chair of the Oxford Neuroscience Strategy Committee. She has also received an MRC Suffrage Science Award and became an honorary member of New College Oxford.  

Méadhbh Brosnan (Dublin) won a Neuroscience Ireland Oral Communication Award. Edwin Dalmaijer won the Donders Hackathon Audience prize, and second prizes for his posters at OxTALENT and the Oxford Neuroscience Symposium. Congratulations!
Congratulations to Nele Demeyere (left) who was appointed Associate Professor in the Department of Experimental Psychology at Oxford, and to Céline Gillebert (right) who became an Assistant Professor of Neuropsychology at the University of Leuven. 

Great news from Oxford: the Wellcome Trust has announced that it will fund a new Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging, linking Experimental Psychology, FMRIB and OHBA.  
Oxford has renewed 5 year funding for its NIHR Biomedical Research Centre with Masud Husain as lead for Neurological Condions. The NIHR has also awarded funding for a new Biomedical Research Centre specialising in mental health and dementia. Congratulations to Kia Nobre who is a theme leader on this award. Kia also contributed to an EU-funded Joint Programme for Neurodegenerative Disease Research grant and was the principal applicant on a Collaborative Network Award on 'Brain rhythms in cognition' from the James McDonnell Foundation.
Edwin Dalmaijer’s (Oxford) Python for Experimental Psychologists is an indispensable resource for any researcher who wants to script experiments and analyses in Python. Written informally and practically, it is accessible even to those without any prior programming experience.

Ian Robertson’s (TC Dublin) new popular science book The Stress Test reveals how we can shape our brain's response to pressure and answers the question: can stress ever be a good thing?

Masud Husain (Oxford) co-edited the new Oxford Textbook of Cognitive Neurology and Dementia, which covers the dramatic developments in basic neuroscience and clinical research in an integrated fashion.
Selected recent papers
Chauvin, J. J., Gillebert, C. R., Rohenkohl, G., Humphreys, G. W., Nobre, A. C. (2016). Temporal orienting of attention can be preserved in normal aging. Psychology and Aging, 31(5): 422-55.

Dalmaijer, E.S., Pama, E.A.C., & Prins, S. (2016). United Kingdom: Illness should not curtail PhD funding. Nature, 539: 495. doi:10.1038/539495e

Kanai, R., Dalmaijer, E.S., Sherman, M.T., Kawakita, G., & Paffen, C.L.E. (in press). Larger stimuli require longer time for perception. Perception.

Menegaux, A., C. Meng, J. Neitzel, J. G. Bäuml, H. J. Müller, P. Bartmann, D. Wolke, A. M. Wohlschläger, K. Finke, and C. Sorg (in press). Impaired visual short-term memory capacity is distinctively associated with structural connectivity of the posterior thalamic radiation and the splenium of the corpus callosum in preterm-born adults. NeuroImage.

Mok, R. M., Myers, N. E., Wallis, G., Nobre, A. C. (2016). Behavioral and Neural Markers of Flexible Attention over Working Memory in Aging. Cerebral Cortex, 26: 1831-42.

Oderkerk, C., Vangkilde, S., Petersen, A., & Bundesen, C. (2016). Processing speed modulation in rhythmic entrainment paradigms. Journal of Vision, 16(12): 586-586.
Salvato, G., Patai, E. Z., Nobre, A. C. (2016). Preserved memory-based orienting of attention with impaired explicit memory in healthy ageing. Cortex, 74: 67-78.

Shalev, N., Humphreys, G., & Demeyere, N. (2016). Assessing the temporal aspects of attention and its correlates in aging and chronic stroke patients. Neuropsychologia, 92: 59-68.

University of Oxford, Department of Experimental Psychology
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