The past several decades have witnessed remarkable progress on elucidating the disease mechanisms of the aging brain. Imaging technologies have allowed scientists to map neural network dynamics in exquisite detail, with noteworthy consequences for medicine and society. In our laboratory, we leverage neuroimaging and electrophysiology to study neurovascular injury, trauma-induced neural plasticity and atypical neurodegeneration. We integrate brain mapping techniques with machine intelligence and computational biology approaches to investigate how brain connectivity alterations caused by vascular brain injury add to the neurocognitive deficits of aging victims of concussions, cerebral amyloid angiopathy or dementia. We are interested in how vascular disease affects brain aging trajectories, and in the relationship between brain trauma and neurodegenerative diseases. Our extensive experience with the bioinformatics and quantitative analysis of neuroimaging data has allowed us to pioneer award-winning approaches for the analysis and visualization of brain connectivity. The laboratory has also made important discoveries on the reorganization and plasticity of neural connections after brain trauma. We have obtained unique insights into the relationship between neural injury, brain plasticity and neurodegenerative disease, many of which have been popularized in science magazines and neuroscience textbooks.

Focus Areas


Associate Professor of Gerontology
USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology

Office Phone: (213) 740-1710
Office Location: GER 228C

Primary Research Areas

  • Understanding aging- and concussion-related reorganization of the human connectome
  • The relationship between traumatic brain injury and dementia
  • How concussions may lead to clinical depression in older adults