Photo by Olu Faseyitan
Chatterjee Lab, Spring 2013 (not pictured: Bree Chancellor, Geena Ianni, Sonali Mehta)

Lab Personnel

Lab Director:

Anjan Chatterjee, M.D., F.A.A.N.
Professor of Neurology
Department of Neurology
E-mail: anjan[at][dot]edu

My area of interest is in Cognitive Neuroscience and Behavioral and Cognitive Neurology. My research is directed at understanding the architecture and neural bases for human cognition. The structure of cognition is at present (and perhaps in principle) not reduced easily to cellular or molecular explanations. The study of how the brain mediates cognition, while constrained by micro-neural facts, is more directly investigated at higher levels of organization by studying cognition in humans. We use experimental and neuroimaging techniques in normal subjects and examine the neuro-psychological effects of brain damage. A clear understanding of cognitive systems and their breakdown is essential in educating patients and families and critical in designing rational treatment strategies.


Patient Coordinator:


Eileen Cardillo, D. Phil.
E-mail: eica[at][dot]edu

Research: As the coordinator of the Patient Database at the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience , I act as a liaison between patients with brain injury, their neurologists and families, and the scientists and clinicians studying the effects of brain injury on cognition. My own research concerns embodied approaches to language and their ability to account for normal comprehension and as well as the linguistic impairments following brain injury. Using a combination of behavioral and neuroimaging tasks with healthy adults and patients, I specifically focus on the neural basis of metaphoric and spatial language. I am also interested in cognitive and neural changes associated with different types of meditation practice.


Post-Doctoral Fellows:

Marguerite McQuire, Ph.D.
E-mail: mcquire[at][dot]edu

Research Interests: Despite the prevalence of figurative language in communication, we know little about the processes underlying its comprehension. As a graduate student at UCSD, I used electroencephalography (EEG) and behavioral methods to gain insights into literal and figurative language comprehension. Here at Penn, I hope to add to this line of study by investigating the underlying neurophysiological mechanisms using fMRI and VLSM methods with typical and patient populations. I speak fluent Spanish and French and enjoy playing wheelchair tennis.


Lorna C. Quandt, Ph.D.
E-mail: lquandt[at][dot]edu

Research Interests: My research primarily concerns the neural basis of spatial cognition. In my doctoral work at Temple University, I used EEG to look at how experience and perception are related. Specifically, I explored how sensorimotor experience with actions might modulate activity in the sensorimotor cortex during subsequent action observation. Going forward, I will be using functional neuroimaging techniques to investigate how action, space, and language are represented in the mind.


Medical Students:


Lauren McCollum

Research Interests: As a poet-turned-medical-student, I decided to research the neural underpinnings of metaphor comprehension for my 'scholarly pursuit' research project at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Specifically, I am studying the effects of metaphor aptness on eye movements during reading. Currently, I am in my fourth and final year of medical school and planning to pursue post-graduate training in neurology. Prior to matriculating at Penn, I received a Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing from New York University.


Undergraduate Students:

Melissa Beswick

Research Interests: I am an undergraduate at Penn majoring in the Biological Basis of Behavior. I am interested in neuroaesthetics, specifically how people with varying levels of expertise look at and evaluate different types of art. Outside of research, I enjoy writing for the BBB Society's Brainstorm blog, painting, and playing tennis.


Alex Yu

Research Interests: I am an undergraduate at Penn majoring in English. As an English major the brain fascinates me in how it is able to shape and mold linguistic concepts, but as a dancer I am curious as to how we are able to produce movement and beauty through intuition.


High School Students:

Devi Majeske

Research Interests: I am a junior at Central High School. I am especially interested in neuroscience and the cognitive process. My research at Penn focuses on aesthetics and the cognitive processes underlying our perceptions and preferences in the realm of art. Outside of the lab, I play tennis, guitar, and I enjoy ice-skating.


Visiting Researchers:

Mary Dumler

Research Interests: I am an undergraduate psychology student and vocalist from Loyola University New Orleans. Here at Penn, my research focus involves figurative language as it effects creative thinking. My interests include listening to and singing jazz, writing music, and making clay miniatures.

Gürer Gündöndü

Research Interests: I am a Turkish liberal arts student from St. John's College studying the Great Books of the Western civilization. The questions of cognition are the basis of many great books that I study and of neuroscience, and they excite me. I would like to do research in the relationship of culture and identity, and linguistics. I enjoy traveling, studying languages, hiking and am developing an interest in running and cooking.

Diana Laura Rosa-Leyra

Research Interests: My research interests lie at the intersection of neuroaesthetics and social cognition. I am interested in the effects of facial beauty on physical movements and actions in the social world. In the lab, I am studying the effects of facial beauty on arm movements using a mouse-tracking paradigm. Outside of the lab, every now and then, I sing opera and read philosophy books.


Emily Rogers
Research Specialist
Department of Neurology
E-mail: rogerse[at][dot]edu

Research Interests: After completing my Master’s degree in psychological research at the University of East Anglia in England, I became increasingly interested in the neural basis of the behavioral and cognitive processes that I had been studying from a psychological perspective. Specifically, I am interested in more socially interactive aspects of cognitive processing, such as the ways we perceive and interpret various forms of language and communication. Other than research, I enjoy yoga, drawing and rock climbing.