Christina Figueroa

Christina Figueroa graduated from the University of Arizona in 2007 with a B.S. in psychology and a minor in pre-law. As an undergrad, Christina worked as a research assistant in psychophysiological, clinical, and linguistic research. After graduating, she took the position as Laboratory Manager for the Laboratory of Neural Computation and Cognition at the University of Arizona, which later transferred to Brown University. While with the LNCC, Christina investigated the differential effects of medication on the cognitive process of Parkinson's disease patients. She remained with the lab for three years. Christina is currently entering her fourth year at Marquette University where she is investigating reinforcement learning and memory process in elders at risk for Alzheimer’s Disease. During her free time, Christina enjoys listening to music, reading, indulging in TV shows, cooking, traveling, and spending time with her family, friends, and dog.

PUBLICATIONS

Smith, J. C., Nielson, K. A., Woodard, J. L., Seidenberg, M., Durgerian, S., Hazlett, K. E., Figueroa, C.M., Kandah, C.C., Kay, C.D., Matthew, M.A., & Rao, S. M. (2014). Physical activity reduces hippocampal atrophy in elders at genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, 6, 61. doi:10.3389/fnagi.2014.00061

Kay, C.D., Seidenberg, M., Durgerian, S., Woodard, J.L., Nielson, K.A., Smith, J.C., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., & Rao, S.M. (2014). Intraindividual variability in motor timing and structural brain volumes in elders at risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Under review in Journal of the International Neuropsychological Science.

Cavanagh, J.F., Figueroa, C.M., Cohen, M.X, & Frank, M.J. (2011). Frontal theta reflects uncertainty and unexpectedness in exploration and exploitation. Cerebral Cortex. Advance online publication. doi:10.1093/cercor/bhr332

Cavanagh, J.F., Wiecki, T.V., Cohen, M.X, Figueroa, C.M., Samanta, J., Sherman S.J.,& Frank, M.J. (2011). Subthalamic nucleus stimulation reverses mediofrontal influence over decision threshold. Nature Neuroscience, 14(11), 1462-1467. doi: 10.1038/nn.2925

Gründler, T.O.J., Cavanagh, J.F., Figueroa, C., Frank, M.J., & Allen, J.J.B. (2009). Task-related Dissociation in ERN Amplitude as a Function of Obsessive-Compulsive Symptoms. Neuropsychologia, 47, 1978-1987.

MANUSCRIPTS IN PREPARATION

Figueroa, C. M., Hazlett, K. E., Marinelli, R., & Nielson, K.A. (in preparation). Reinforcement Learning in Individuals at Risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

Nielson., K.A., Figueroa, C.M., and Hazlett, K. E. (in preparation). Intraindividual Variability Distinguishes Healthy Elders by Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease.

Nielson., K.A., Figueroa, C.M., and Hazlett, K. E. (in preparation). A Physically Active Lifestyle Enhances Executive Functioning in Elders.

Hazlett, K. E., Figueroa, C. M., Nielson, K.A. (in preparation). Executive functioning and Alzheimer’s disease: Family history predicts performance on the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test.

Marinelli, R., Speeter, O., Gaber, E., Hazlett, K. E., Figueroa, C. M., & Nielson, K. A. (in preparation). Vagal tone, as measured by heart rate variability is important to executive functioning: a study of Stroop interference.

Zurek, A., Hazlett, K. E., Byers, S. J., Figueroa, C. M., & Nielson, K. A. (in preparation). Emotional suppression: consequences for general memory ability in young and older adults.

Nielson, K.A., Hantke, N.C., Woodard, J.L., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., Durgerian,S. …. & Rao, S.M. (in preparation). Correct Rejections of Famous Names in Episodic Memory and Apolipoprotein-E ε4 Predict Future Cognitive Decline In Healthy Elders.

Nielson, K.A., Durgerian, S., Butts, A.M., Woodard, J.L., Seidenberg, M., Smith, J.C., Hantke, N.C., Lancaster, M.A., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., & Rao, S.M. (in preparation). Prospectively measured hippocampal volume distinguishes stable from cognitively declining elders: comparison of FreeSurfer and manual tracing.


CONFERENCE POSTER PRESENTATIONS

Figueroa, C. M., Hazlett, K. E., Marinelli, R., & Nielson, K.A. (May, 2014). Reinforcement Learning in Individuals at Risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Poster presented at the Midwest Neuropsychology Group, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Figueroa, C. M., Hazlett, K. E., Marinelli, R., & Nielson, K.A. (April, 2014). Reinforcement Learning in Individuals at Risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Poster presented at the 21st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, Boston, Massachusetts.

Nielson., K.A., Figueroa, C.M., &Hazlett, K. E.. (April, 2014). A Physically Active Lifestyle Enhances Executive Functioning in Elders. Poster presented at the 21st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, Boston, Massachusetts.

Hazlett, K. E., Figueroa, C. M., & Nielson, K.A. (April, 2014). Executive functioning and Alzheimer’s disease: Family history predicts performance on the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test. Poster presented at the 21st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, Boston, Massachusetts.

Reiter, K., Nielson, K.A., Durgerian, S., Woodard, J.L., Seidenberg, M., Smith, J.C., Figueroa, C.M., Hazlett, K.E, Kay, C.D., Kandah, C.C., Sugarman, M.A., Norman, A.L., and Rao, S.M. (April, 2014). Healthy elders carrying the Apolipoprotein-E ε4 allele exhibit greater brain atrophy over 5 years than non-carriers. Poster presented at the 21st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, Boston, Massachusetts.

Marinelli, R., Speeter, O., Gaber, E., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., & Nielson, K.A. (April, 2014). Degree of Fluctuation in Heart Rate Variability is Related to Cognitive Performance. Poster presented at the Wisconsin Psychological Association, Madison, Wisconsin.

Kay, C.D., Seidenberg, M., Durgerian, S., Smith, J.C., Woodard, J.L., Nielson, K.A., Lancaster, M.A., Matthews, M.A., Kandah, C.C., Hazlett, K. E., Figueroa, C. M., Sugarman, M.A., Norman, A.L., & Rao, S.M. (February, 2014). Motor Timing Intraindividual Variability and Brain Volumes in Healthy Aging and Mild Cognitive Impairment. Poster presented at 42nd Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Seattle, Washington. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 20 (S1), p. 234.

A. Bonner-Jackson, Durgerian, S., Woodard, J.L., Nielson, K.A., Seidenberg, M., Smith, J.C., Butts, A.M., Lancaster, M.A., Matthews, M.A., Sugarman, M.A., Kay. C.D., Kandah, C.C., Hantke, N., Norman, A.L., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M. & S.M. RAO. Longitudinal Changes in Semantic Memory Activation in Healthy Elders at Genetic Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease: Results of a 5 Year fMRI Study. Poster presented at 42nd Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Seattle, Washington. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 20 (S1), p. 155

Lancaster, M.A, Seidenberg, M., Durgerian, S., Nielson, K.A., Woodard, J.L., Smith, J.C., Matthews, M.A., Butts, Hantke, N., Kay, C.D., Kandah, C.C., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., Michael, S.A., Norman, A.L., & RAO, S.M. Longitudinal White Matter Changes across the Alzheimer’s Disease Risk Continuum: A Diffusion Tensor Imaging Study. Poster presented at 42nd Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Seattle, Washington. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 20 (S1), p. 233-4

Matthews, M.A., Seidenberg, M., Woodard, J.L., Nielson, K.A., Smith, J.C., Durgerian, S., Lancaster, M.A., Kandah, C.C., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., Norman, A.L., Sugarman, M.A., & RAO, S.M. Different Contributions of Family History and Genetic Risk on 5-year Cognitive Changes in Healthy Older Adults. Poster presented at 42nd Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Seattle, Washington. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 20 (S1), p. 249-50

Tschanz, A.C., Byers, S. J., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., & Nielson, K.A. (April, 2013).
Self-Reported Emotion Regulation and Cognitive Functioning in Young Adults. Poster presented at the Wisconsin Psychological Association, Madison, Wisconsin.

Zurek, A.A., Byers, S. J., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., & Nielson, K.A. (April, 2013).
Consequences of Emotional Suppression on General Memory Ability in Older Adults. Poster presented at the Wisconsin Psychological Association, Madison, Wisconsin.

Figueroa, C. M., Hazlett, K. E., Nielson, K.A., Woodard, J.L., Smith, J.C., Seidenberg, M., Durgerian, S., Hantke, N.C., Sugarman, M.A., Kay, C.D., Kandah, C.C., Norman, A.L., Lancaster, M.A., Matthews, M.A., & Rao, S.M. (February, 2013). Predictive Ability of Intraindividual Variability in Healthy Elders at Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease. Poster presented at the 41st Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Waikoloa, Hawaii.

Hazlett, K. E., Figueroa, C. M., Nielson, K.A., Durgerian, S., Woodard, J.L., Smith, J.C., Seidenberg, M., Hantke, N.C., Sugarman, M.A., Kay, C.D., Kandah, C.C., Norman, A.L., Lancaster, M.A., Matthews, M.A., & Rao, S.M. (February, 2013). Longitudinal Change in Parahippocampal Cortical Thickness as a Function of Cognitive Decline and Genetic Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease. Poster presented at the 41st Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Waikoloa, Hawaii.

Nielson, K.A., Woodard, J.L., Hazlett, K.E., Figueroa, C.M., Seidenberg, M., Smith, J.C., Durgerian, S., Hantke, N.C., Sugarman, M.A., Kay, C. D., Kandah, C. C., Norman, A., Lancaster, M.A., Matthews, M.A., & Rao, S.M. (February, 2013). Episodic Memory, Hippocampal Activation During Encoding, and Eventual Cognitive Decline in Elders: the Importance of Correct Rejections. Poster presented at the 41st Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Waikoloa, Hawaii.

Woodard, J.L., Nielson, K.A., Seidenberg, M., Smith, J.C., Durgerian, S., Sugarman, M.A., Norman, A.L., Lancaster, M.A., Matthews M.A., Kandah, C.C., Kay, C.D., Figueroa, C.M., Hazlett, K.E., & Rao, S.M. (February, 2013). Use of Automated Hippocampal Subfield Segmentation for Predicting Probability of Cognitive Decline in Healthy Older Adults. Poster presented at the 41st Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Waikoloa, Hawaii.

Smith, J. C., Nielson, K. A., Woodard, J. L., Seidenberg, M., Durgerian, S., Hantke, N. C., Lancaster, M. A., Matthews, M. A., Sugarman, M., Figueroa, C. M., Hazlett, K. E., Kay, C. D., Norman, A., Kandah, C. C., & Rao, S.M. (February, 2013). Longitudinal Associations Between Physical Activity, Cognitive Decline, and Hippocampal Volume in Healthy APOE-ε4 Carriers. Poster presented at the 41st Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Waikoloa, Hawaii.

Kay, C. D., Seidenberg, M., Kandah, C. C., Matthews, M. A., Lancaster, M. A., Durgerian, S., Nielson, K. A., Woodard, J. L., Smith, J. C., Figueroa, C. M., Hazlett, K. E., Hantke, N. C., Sugarman, M., Norman, A. L., & Rao, S.M. (February, 2013). Fine Motor Variability, APOE-ε4, and Longitudinal Memory Outcome in Healthy Elders. Poster presented at the 41st Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society, Waikoloa, Hawaii.

Figueroa, C.M., & Nielson, K. (November, 2011). Decision Making in Implicit Memory Processes of Healthy Elders at High Versus Low Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease. Poster presented at Forward Thinking, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Hersman, S., Figueroa, C., Badre, D., & Frank, M.J. (November, 2010). Dopamingeric Modulation of Working Memory Pathways: Influence of Contextual Cues on the Discovery of Hierarchical Relationships. Poster presented at Society for Neuroscience, San Diego, California.

Nguyen, E., Figueroa, C., & Frank, M.J. (August, 2010). Uncertainty and Exploration in Subjects with OCD Tendencies. Poster presented at the Summer Research Symposium, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island.
Cavanagh, J., Figueroa, C., Cohen, M., & Frank, M. (April, 2010). Prefrontal Activities Contributing To Reward Exploration. Poster presented at Cognitive Neuroscience Society, San Francisco, California.

Cohen, M.X., Cavanagh, J.F., Figueroa, C.M., Spitler, K., Sherman S., Allen, J.J.B., & Frank, M.J. (November, 2008). Deep Brain Stimulation to the Subthalamic Nucleus Modulates Conflict Processing and Cortical Oscillatory Dynamics in Parkinson's Patients. Poster presented at the Society for Neuroscience, Washington, D.C.

Cavanagh, J.F. Gründler, T.O.J., Figueroa, C., Kaczkurkin, A., Frank, M.J. & Allen, J.J.B. (April, 2008). sLORETA Reveals Resting Anterior Cingulate Theta Band Power Differences in High vs. Low Obsessive Compulsive Symptomology. Poster presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, San Francisco, California.

Gründler, T.O.J., Cavanagh, J.F, Figueroa, C., Frank, M.J. & Allen, J.J.B. (2008). Task related dissociation in performance monitoring as a function of obsessive – compulsive symptoms. Poster presented at the International Organization of Psychophysiology, St. Petersburg, Russia.


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