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NIH Neuroimaging Training Program

Current and Past Trainees

Adam Black
Biomedical Engineering

Adam Black is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. He received his BS in Electrical Engineering from North Dakota State University in 2008. In the Biomedical Optics Lab, Adam will be using phase-sensitive optical coherence tomography to functionally image retinal preparations.
Advisor: Taner Akkin; Co-Advisor: Tim Ebner.

Brian Castle
Biomedical Engineering

Brian Castle graduated Cum Laude from Gustavus Adolphus College with a major in Biology and a focus in Mathematics in the spring of 2008. At Gustavus he was both a Dean's Scholar and a Marshall H. and Nellie Alworth Memorial Scholar. He began as a graduate student in Biomedical Engineering in the fall of 2008. He is interested in how synaptic connections are formed and lost in the brain. His work will focus on the role that the cytoskeleton plays in synaptic plasticity. Using embryonic chick forebrain neurons as their model system, they plan to use fluorescent microscopy to observe microtubule and actin dynamics at the synapse.
Advisor: Dr. Dave Odde; Co-Advisor: Dr. Tim Ebner.

Thomas Christie
Cognitive Science

Thomas Christie is a Cognitive Science doctoral student with a minor in Computer Science. He received a BA summa cum laude in Mathematics from Hendrix College in 2006 and an MA in Liberal Arts from St. John's College in 2008. He is interested in using MEG to investigate neural behavior related to reading narrative text, as well as using the perspectives of Control Theory and Information Theory to quantitatively model human perception and attention.
Advisor: Dr. Apostolos Georgopoulos; Co-Advisor: Dr. Paul Schrater.

John Ferguson
Biomedical Engineering

John Ferguson is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. He received a B.S. in Physics and Business, Economics, and Management from Caltech, an M.Sc. in International Health Policy from the London School of Economics, and an M.Phil. in Bioscience Enterprise from the University of Cambridge. John's research interests include neural recording devices and micro/nanofabrication for imaging neural electrical activity in behaving animals.
Advisor: Dr. David Redish; Co-Advisor: Dr. Bin He.

Keith Jamison
Biomedical Engineering

Keith Jamison received his BS in Computer Science in 2004 and MEng in Biomedical Engineering in 2006 from Cornell University. He worked as a research assistant at George Mason University developing materials for implantable neural electrodes. Keith is interested in developing analytical techniques to map the brain's functional connectivity, and in applying these techniques to cognitive neuroscientific problems. His current interest is functional neuroimaging of neural circuits in human visual systems.
Advisor: Dr. Bin He; Co-Advisors: Drs. Stephen Engel and Sheng He.

Nessa Johnson
Biomedical Engineering

Nessa Johnson is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. She received her B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering in 2009 and M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering in 2010 both from the University of St. Thomas. Nessa is interested in combining Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) and functional brain imaging techniques to map the brain's functional connectivity.
Advisor: Dr. Bin He; Co-Advisors: Drs. James Carey and James Ashe.

Steve Kerrigan

Steve Kerrigan is a Ph. D. candidate in the Department of Neuroscience. While attending The Colorado College he began his research career studying physical oceanography in Woods Hole, MA, and then cancer cell immunology at Dana-Farber Hospital in Boston, MA. Since receiving his BA in Neuroscience from CC Steve has focused on motor control and utilized Humans, Zebra Finches, larval Zebra fish, and finally Non-Human Primates as research subjects. He is currently looking for a representation of time in the pre-motor cortex of primates during the performance of a timed sequential task. The analysis is focused on the representation of time by single neurons and small neuronal ensembles using both spikes and local field potentials as input to information theoretic techniques developed with Steve’s NITP Co-Advisor Paul Schrater. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) delivered for several seconds at a rate of 60 Hz will be used to temporarily and non-invasively inactivate regions of prefrontal cortex for several minutes at a time. These interventions are aimed to confirm that the representation of time carried by frontal cortex is required for successful performance of the task.
Advisor: Dr. Jim Ashe; Co-Advisor: Dr. Paul Schrater.

Rebecca Klank
Biomedical Engineering

Rebecca Klank is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Michigan Technological University in 2009 with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering. Rebecca is interested in how the brain microenvironment affects the migration and invasion of cancerous glial cells (glioma). As a neuroimaging training fellow she is working on techniques to image single-cell glioma migration in vivo using confocal and two-photon microscopy.
Advisor: Dr. Dave Odde; Co-Advisor: Dr. Tim Ebner.

Sean Landman
Computer Science & Engineering

Sean Landman is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Computer Science & Engineering. He received his B.A. in Numerical Computation in 2010 from St. John's University in Collegeville, MN, and his M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Minnesota in 2012. Sean's research interests include biomedical data mining for predictive biomarkers in neuroimaging, genetic, and other data sets, as well as computational genomics, such as next-generation sequencing data analysis, genome assembly, and structural variation prediction.
Advisor: Dr. Vipin Kumar; Co-Advisor: Dr. Kelvin Lim.

Zhicheng Lin

Zhicheng Lin is a PhD student in the Department of Psychology. He received his BS in Psychology from Peking University (aka Beijing University) in 2007, after a stint as a research intern at University College London. His research interests include investigating the interaction of feature encoding and feature integration, and how attention and awareness might facilitate or impair our perception of the world, using neuroimaging techniques.
Advisor: Dr. Sheng He; Co-Advisors: Drs. Daniel J. Kersten, Stephen Engel, and Bin He

Jiaen Liu
Biomedical Engineering

Jiaen Liu is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. He received his B.S. degree in Environmental Engineering in 2005 and M.S. degree in Instrumentation Science and Techology in 2007 both from Tsinghua University. Jiaen is interested in functional brain imaging and instrumentation. He is now working on in vivo imaging of brain electrical properties using MRI.
Advisor: Dr. Bin He; Co-Advisor: Dr. Pierre-François Van de Moortele.

Michael Powell
Cognitive Science

Michael Powell is a PhD student in Cognitive Science. He received his BA from the University of Washington in International Studies: Asia, and is also a graduate of the Defense Language Institute Korean Language Program. His interests include acquisition of structured information, primarily in regard to language, using neuroimaging techniques including MEG and fMRI.
Advisor: Apostolos Georgopoulos; Co-Advisor: Guillermo Sapiro.

Abhrajeet Roy
Biomedical Engineering

Abhrajeet Roy is a PhD student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. He received his BSE in Bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania in the spring of 2010. Abhrajeet’s research interests include brain-computer interfaces, noninvasive neuromodulation via transcranial current stimulation, and neuropsychopharmacology. In particular, he is interested in how we can use noninvasive imaging modalities such as EEG to track changes in functional connectivity following transcranial stimulation of the brain.
Advisor: Dr. Bin He; Co-Advisor: Dr. Kelvin Lim.

Audrey Royer

Audrey Royer received her BSE degree in Electrical Engineering in 2001 and her MS in Biomedical Engineering in 2002 from the University of Michigan. She is a PhD student in the Graduate Program in Neuroscience and is currently working on applying neuroscience concepts to improve a brain-computer interface based on multi-channel EEG readings of sensorimotor rhythms. Audrey is a member of the Society for Neuroscience and has also been a member of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.
Advisor: Dr. Bin He; Co-Advisor: Dr. Jim Ashe.

Christopher Wilke
Biomedical Engineering

Chris Wilke received his B.S.E. in biomedical engineering from the University of Iowa in 2003. He is a student in the combined MD/PhD training program at the University of Minnesota and completed his PhD in Biomedical Engineering in 2009. His areas of research interest include functional brain mapping and analysis of neural dynamics. Specifically, he is interested in the use of novel functional imaging techniques to better understand the origin and propagation of seizures in patients with epilepsy. Following completion of his training, Chris plans to pursue a career in academic medicine.
Advisor: Bin He; Co-Advisor: Wei Chen.