Cognitive Neuropsychology and Rehabilitation
Name: Francesca Frassinetti
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Position: Associate Professor in Psychobiology and Physiological Psychology
Primary affiliation: Department of Psychology, University of Bologna “Alma Mater Studiorum”
Postal address: Viale Berti Pichat 5, 40127 Bologna, Italy
Voice: (+39) 051 209 1847
Facsimile: (+39) 051 243 086
My research is mainly focused on the understanding of space representation by studying healthy and neurological patients. More specifically, my interest concerns multimodal audio-visual integration in space representation and the rehabilitation of spatial deficit. More recent interests are about body representation and time perception.
Key words: space representation; multimodal integration; rehabilitation of spatial deficit; body representation; time perception.
- 2003. Doctorate (PhD equivalent) in Experimental Psychology, University of Bologna, Italy.
- 1997. Specialization in Neurology, University of Modena, Italy.
- 1993. Degree in Medicine, University of Parma, Italy.
Positions and Employment:
- 2005-to present. Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Bologna, Italy.
- 2001-2005. Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Bologna, Italy.
- 1990-1993. Research Fellow, Laboratory of Human Physiology, University of Parma, Italy.
1) Time perception
One of the characteristics of a visual or an auditory event is its duration. First, it will be studied the ability to time short intervals of an event to verify whether this ability is more accurate when it is based on multiple sources of information, derived from different modalities, than when it is based on only one source of visual or auditory information. Second, the brain mechanisms specialized for the encoding of stimulus duration will be investigated, by using behavioral and neurophysiological approaches. These studies will be conducted in healthy subjects and in brain damaged patients.
2) Body representation
The aim of the present project is to analyze the brain mechanisms involved in body parts recognition with a specific interest for one’s own body parts’ recognition. To this aim healthy subjects and brain damaged patients will be submitted to a series of experiments to investigate which hemisphere and which brain area in each hemisphere is mainly involved in this function and which information is crucial to build the representation of one’s own body.
3) Rehabilitation of visuo-spatial deficit
The rehabilitation of visuo-spatial attentional deficit, i.e. neglect, and of visuo-motor coordination deficit, i.e. optica ataxia, will be the object of this project. First, the precise diagnosis of the deficit will be conducted to individuate the best rehabilitative approach for the deficit. One of this rehabilitative approach will be the treatment with prismatic lenses. Second, the consequence of the rehabilitation of the cognitive deficit on the motor recovery, will be studied. Finally, the behavioral and neuroanatomical predictors of recovery with the different technique in neglect and optic ataxia amelioration will be investigated.
1. Candini M, Zamagni E, Nuzzo A, Ruotolo F, Iachini T, Frassinetti F. Who is speaking? Implicit and explicit self and other voice recognition. Brain Cogn. 2014 Nov 10;92C:112-117.
2. Magnani B, Frassinetti F, Ditye T, Oliveri M, Costantini M, Walsh V. Left insular cortex and left SFG underlie prismatic adaptation effects on time perception: evidence from fMRI. Neuroimage. 2014 May 15;92:340-8.
3. Oliveri M, Magnani B, Filipelli A, Avanzi S, Frassinetti F. Prismatic adaptation effects on spatial representation of time in neglect patients. Cortex. 2013 Jan;49(1):120-30.
4. Magnani B, Pavani F, Frassinetti F. Changing auditory time with prismatic goggles. Cognition. 2012 Nov;125(2):233-43.
5. Salerno S, Zamagni E, Urquizar C, Salemme R, Farnè A, Frassinetti F. Increases of corticospinal excitability in self-related processing. Eur J Neurosci. 2012 Sep;36(5):2716-21.
6. Magnani B, Oliveri M, Mancuso G, Galante E, Frassinetti F. Time and spatial attention: effects of prism adaptation on temporal deficits in brain damaged patients. Neuropsychologia. 2011 Apr;49(5):1016-23.
7. Frassinetti F, Maini M, Benassi M, Avanzi S, Cantagallo A, Farnè A. Selective impairment of self body-parts processing in right brain-damaged patients. Cortex. 2010 Mar;46(3):322-8.
8. Frassinetti F, Magnani B, Oliveri M. Prismatic lenses shift time perception. Psychol Sci. 2009 Aug;20(8):949-54.
9. Cardinali L, Frassinetti F, Brozzoli C, Urquizar C, Roy AC, Farnè A. Tool-use induces morphological updating of the body schema. Curr Biol. 2009 Jun 23;19(12):R478-9.
10. Frassinetti F, Bolognini N, Bottari D, Bonora A, Làdavas E. Audiovisual integration in patients with visual deficit. J Cogn Neurosci. 2005 Sep;17(9):1442-52.