Elena K. FestaLecturer in Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences
I am a cognitive neuroscientist with research interests in perception, attention and memory in both neurologically-intact individuals and patients with neurocognitive disorders. I received my B.A. in psychology from the College of the Holy Cross in 1992, and my Ph.D. in experimental psychology with emphasis in visual psychophysics from Brown University in 1998. I then completed my postdoctoral training in cognitive neuropsychology at Brown University.
Wu, L., Neskovic, P., Reyes, E., Festa, E. & Heindel, W. (2007). Classifying n-back EEG data using entropy and mutual information features, European Symposium of Artificial Neural Networks (ESANN) Proceedings, 61-66.
Broadly defined, my research examines the mechanisms mediating perception, attention, and memory in both healthy individuals and patients with neurocognitive disorders. I am particularly interested in sensory integration, and how it interacts with attention and memory. My research is not only concerned with informing models of normal cognition, but also developing diagnostic and therapeutic tools for the early-detection and treatment of Alzheimer's disease and other neurological disorders.
My current research focuses on understanding the differential effects of healthy aging and Alzheimer's disease on sensory integration, attention and memory using both behavioral and electrophysiological (EEG) methodological approaches. I am particularly interested in how these data inform neural models of normal cognition. As part of several grant projects, I have also been examining the efficacy of neurofeedback training in improving affective and cognitive functioning in aging and dementia, and investigating the relationship of cognitive impairments and driving performance in elderly adults. The findings from these projects may ultimately lead to the development of novel diagnostic markers and therapeutic tools for the early-detection and treatment of Alzheimer's disease.
"Feature Integration and Attention in Alzheimer's Disease", National Research Service Award (F32-AG05843), $113,160, 06/01/00 05/31/03
"Quantitative EEG and Neurofeedback in Patients with Alzheimer's Disease", Brown University Brain Science Program's Pilot Research Award, $5,000, 04/01/06 03/31/07
"Efficacy of qEEG Neurocognitive Training in Early-Stage Alzheimer's Disease", Alzheimer's Association, $239,362, 09/01/07 - 08/31/10
Brown University Dissertation Research Fellowship Award
Brown University Brain Science Program's Pilot Research Award
National Research Service Award Postdoctoral Research Fellowship
National Eye Institute Travel Fellowship Grant
Psi Chi National Honor Society
Sigma Xi, Scientific Research Society
Davis, Jennifer Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Clinician Educator
Grace, Janet Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Clinician Educator
Heindel, William Professor of Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences, Chair of Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences