Aikaterini Fotopoulou

Aikaterini Fotopoulou
Affiliation: University College London, UK

 

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Katerina runs KatLab (see www.fotopoulou.com), a group of researchers and students that conduct studies on topics and disorders that lie at the borders between neurology and psychology and challenge any rigid distinction between mind and body. The lab is particularly interested in understanding how our embodiment, including the rooting of the mind in our embodied interactions with other people, influence the function of our brain and ultimately shape how we understand ourselves and our new experiences.

Our studies use behavioural, electrophysiological, neuroimaging and pharmacological methods to study body feelings, sensorimotor signals and related body representations in healthy individuals and in patients with neurological and psychiatric disorders of body awareness, including patients with stroke-induced unawareness of deficit and related body delusions, functional sensorimotor disorders and eating disorders.

Katlab is funded by Volkswagen Foundation (Germany), HDRF (US), ISAN (Israel) and more recently a Starting Investigator Grant from the European Research Council. Current research projects focus on the psychological and neural mechanisms by which our interoceptive body feelings, as well as multimodal representations of the body, are influenced by internalised social expectations, on-line interactions with other people and by neuropeptides known to enhance social feelings. These studies point to unique neural mechanisms by which our bodies are interpersonally ‘mentalised’ and perceived to form the basis of our selves.