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Dr Aikaterini Fotopoulou

Research interests

Aikaterini (Katerina) Fotopoulou is a lecturer in Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology at the Institute of Psychiatry. She is also an Associate Member at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London.
Biographical Note: Fotopoulou studied psychology in Athens (Greece); cognitive neuroscience, neuropsychology and theoretical psychoanalysis at University College London (UK); and conducted her PhD in these fields at the University of Durham (UK). She is currently also completing clinical doctorate training in psychotherapy (see below).
Research: Dr Fotopoulou's research focuses on topics and disorders that lie at the borders between neurology and psychiatry, aiming to understand the complex dynamic relation between mind and body. She is particularly interested in understanding how our physical body, our emotions and personal goals, as well as our relations with other people influence the function of our brain and ultimately shape how we understand ourselves and our new experiences. She conducts studies on self-consciousness, pain, emotions and memory in healthy volunteers, in patients that have suffered a stroke or other brain pathologies, as well as in individuals with psychological disorders such as somatisation, functional disorders, chronic pain and depression.

Research Fellowships, Awards and Grants: For these studies, and the many resulting publications in scientific peer-reviewed journals of international standing, Dr Fotopoulou was awarded an ESRC-MRC fellowship in 2005, a Neuropsychoanalysis Fellowship and the Clifford Yorke Prize for Early Career Contributions to Neuropsychoanalysis in 2006, as well as the Papanicolaou Prize from the World Hellenic Biomedical Society (2010). She was also recently awarded the British Neuropsychological Society's Early Career Award: The Elizabeth Warrington Prize (2011).

Finally, having won an earlier European competition of junior investigators (European Platform for Life Sciences, Mind Sciences and the Humanities ; supported by the Volkswagen Foundation), Dr Fotopoulou has more recently (2010) been awarded a further project grant from the Volkswagen Foundation to lead and coordinate an Interdisciplinary European Research Group that considers neuroscientific, psychological and philosophical perspectives in the study of interpersonal body awareness and pain perception. The London-based branch of this group has further won a project grant for the Hope for Depression Research Foundation (2010) to study the neural correlates of these effects in depressed patients.

Clinical Interests, Training and Activities: Dr Fotopoulou is completing a 4-year Doctorate Degree in Counselling and Psychotherapeutic Psychology, accredited by the British Psychological Society. This degree provides formalisation to her long standing interest and extensive volunteer placements in neuropsychological rehabilitation and translational research.

Dr Fotopoulou has been a member of the Neuropsychoanalysis Society's executive and organizational committee since 2003 and has run a monthly Neuropsychoanalysis and Psychodynamic Neuroscience group in London since September 2009. In 2007 she and Professor Martin Conway were awarded a grant from the British Economic and Social Sciences Council to host a two-year long seminar series in London. Bringing together distinguished scholars and researchers from the fields of psychology, neuroscience and psychoanalysis, the resulting publication (Eds. A. Fotopoulou, D.; M.A. Conway), entitled 'From the Couch to the Lab: Trends in Psychodynamic Neuroscience' is due to be published by Oxford University Press in March 2012.

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