Biography

Diana completed both her BSc in Psychology and MSc (honours) in neuropsychology and experimental psychology at University of Pavia, Italy.  The primary research focus of her MSc dissertation was the evaluation of emotional face and body postures recognition in healthy subjects and spinal cord injury patients. Then, under the supervision of Professor Gabriella Bottini and Dr Anna Sedda, she completed a 12 month-long internship at the Department of Brain and Behavioural Science (University of Pavia), where she gained significant experience in behavioural tasks, neuromodulation of brain activity (e.g., tDCS and CVS) and statistical analysis. Studying emotions, Diana developed a strong interest in social action to interact with others and this has led to the interest in how we interact and act with the surroundings.

Diana was awarded a PhD studentship to research at UEA’s School of Psychology, starting in October 2014. Under the supervision of Dr Stephanie Rossit, Diana is researching how the brain controls hand actions. 

Key Research Interests

Diana's current research is looking to understand how the brain controls hand actions, such as grasping and reaching, in everyday life both in healthy subjects and neurological patients (e.g., neglect, apraxia, optic ataxia).

Research Interests

  • Role of sensory information for perception and action and how these two processes interact
  • Affordances
  • Visual field preferences
  • Neural representations of real hand action toward 3D tools
  • Actions in peripersonal and extrapersonal space
  • Emotion processing

 Methods

  • Behavioural tasks
  • Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)
  • transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS)
  • Caloric Vestibular Stimulation (CVS)
  • Motion-tracker
  • Eye-tracker
  • functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI)
  • Lesion-symptom mapping

Supervisor:

Dr Stephanie Rossit