People

Laboratory Personel

Lofti Merabet Profile Picture                                                                                                                                                                                  
Lotfi B. Merabet, OD PhD MPH
Director

p: (617) 573-4130  email 

Lotfi Merabet is an optometrist-scientist and a member of the research faculty in the Vision Rehabilitation Service at Massachusetts Eye and Ear.  He is active in research relating to individuals' adaptations to loss of sight and profound blindness. Dr. Merabet attended the University of Ottawa for his undergraduate degree in biology, followed by a master’s in physiology at the University of Sherbrooke, doctorate in neuroscience at the University of Montreal, doctorate in optometry at the New England College of Optometry, and masters degrees in Clinical Investigation at HMS-MIT/HST and in Public Health at Harvard. He has also completed two postdoctoral research fellowships in noninvasive brain stimulation (HMS/BIDMC) and neuroimaging (BU/MGH). He continues to lecture and serve as an advisor within the local blind community and also serves on the Board of Directors at the Carroll Center for the Blind and National Braille Press. Dr. Merabet's main research interests include the development of assistive technology and much of this work is done in local collaboration with the Carroll Center and Perkins School for the Blind as well as internationally with the Universities of Chile and Milan.
 
Corinna Bauer Profile Picture
Corinna M. Bauer,  PhD 
Instructor of Ophthalmology

p: (617) 573-4072  email  

Corinna Bauer is a neuroscientist specializing in the analysis and interpretation of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) images of the brain in relationship to neural development and degeneration. She completed her master's degree in biomedical imaging and doctorate degree in anatomy and neurobiology at Boston University School of Medicine. Corinna also holds bachelor degrees in music and in physiology/psychology from the University of Western Ontario (London, ON Canada).  Corinna's research focuses on the use of multimodal neuroimaging techniques to better elucidate the structural and functional changes that occur in individuals with cortical visual impairment.  The novelty of this study is the utilization and combination of multiple imaging modalities to investigate how the brain has reorganized its structural and functional networks as a result of congenital damage to the occipital visual cortex compared to ocular blind and sighted individuals. The results of this study will help develop novel approaches for multimodal network analysis and contribute insights towards the development of rehabilitation and education plans for clinicians and educators to better serve individuals with CVI, which is the leading cause of congenital visual impairment in the USA.

 

Christopher Bennett Profile Picture
Christopher R. Bennett
Postdoctoral Fellow 
p: (617) 807-7849 email
 

Christopher Bennett specializes in blending research design, methods and analysis with collection of behavioral data through interactive technology. He received a B.A. in Psychology from Villanova University, before completing his doctorate degree in Spatial Information Science and Engineering from the University of Maine. Currently, Chris is working on integrating eye tracking, hand gestures, and electroencephalogram (EEG) into behavioral research involving individuals with cortical visual impairment (CVI). This work focuses on evaluating spatial searching and crowding for those with CVI as compared to sighted controls. The outcome of these studies contributes to novel technological applications, research design, and potential solutions for improving spatial searching for individuals with CVI.

 

Emma Bailin Profile Picture
Emma S. Bailin
Study Coordinator

p: (617) 573-3794  email

Emma received her B.A in Neuroscience from Wellesley College in Wellesley, Massachusetts in May 2016. She is particularly interested in the division between sensation and perception, especially as it relates to vision. Her favorite topic in this field is crossmodal plasticity, or how the brain is restructured to accomplish tasks in one sensory modality using the components typically dedicated to another process or sense. In addition to her love of all things neuroscience, she has a background in computer science. 

 

Timothy Gottlieb Profile Picture
Timothy K. Gottlieb
Assistant Programmer
 
Timothy was born with ocular albinism, so he is extremely nearsighted. He discovered video games as a young child and realized that video games, with their ability to make him feel like he had perfect vision when he could get right in front of the screen, were the great equalizer. This realization inspired him to pursue video design. In 2015, he graduated from Becker College with a Bachelor’s of Arts in interactive media game design. He currently works for the Laboratory for Visual Neuroplasticity as a programmer helping to design the stimuli for electroencephalogram (EEG) and virtual reality experiments.
 

 

Antonio Guimaraes       
Antonio Guimaraes 
Founder & CEO, Access To Places

p: (978) 397-2781  email 

Antonio recieved a bachelors in communication from the University of Massachusetts Boston in May of 2016. Antonio’s work in the lab relates to the application of technology in orientation and mobility, tactile perception of the blind, and augmented audio reality. He is the founder of a company providing indoor navigation solutions to blind and visually impaired people at metro stations in Boston and beyond. 

 

 

 

 

Laboratory Alumni

 

Mark Halko - Postdoctoral Fellow

Erin Connors - Senior Study Coordinator

Gabriella Hirsch - Study Coordinator

Lindsay Yazzolino - Study Coordinator

Nora Bradford - Summer Intern

Molly Connors - Summer Intern

Daniel Park - Summer Intern

Joshua Park - Summer Intern

Della Shi Summer Intern

Bowen Zhan - Summer Intern

 

Collaborators & Friends

 

Marina Bedny

Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Johns Hopkins University, Zanvyl Krieger School of Arts & Sciences

Peter Bex 

Translational Vision Lab, College of Science, Northeastern University 

Paulo Boggio

Laboratory for Cognitive and Social Neuroscience, Mackenzie Presbyterian University 

Nadia Bolognini

Laboratory for Multisensory and Neuromodulation Research, University of Milan

Zaira Cattaneo

Department of Psychology, University of Milan

Andrew Ellison

Chief MRI Technologist, BUSM Center for Biomedical Imaging

Felipe Fregni

The Laboratory of Neuromodulation & Center for Clinical Research Learning at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital

Nicholas Giudice

Virtual Environments and Multimodal Interaction Lab at the University of Maine

Gena Heidary

Department of Ophthalmology, Boston Children's Hospital

Jaime Sánchez

Department of Computer Science, University of Chile

Krish Sathian 

Department of Neurology, Emory University School of Medicine

Pawan Sinha

The Sinha Laboratory for Vision Research, Massachusettes Institute of Technology

David Somers

Perceptual Neuroimaging Laboratory, Boston University

Boston University School of Medicine Center for Biomedical Imaging

The Carroll Center for the Blind

The National Braille Press

The Perkins School for the Blind

 

Funding

 

Primary support for our research has come from:

National Institutes of Health (NIH) - National Eye Institute

Massachusetts Lions Eye Research Fund

The John W Alden Trust

Deborah Munroe Noonan Memorial Research Fund

Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB)/ Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF)