Communication Committee

The role of the communications committee is to facilitate and enhance communications between the society and the membership through the newsletter, Facebook and Twitter.


Heather Bortfeld, Chair, is a Professor of Psychological Sciences at the University of California, Merced.  Her research focuses on typical language development and language learning under adverse listening conditions. Since 2002, she has been employing near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to assess the relation between speech processing and brain function in healthy human infants. Since 2007, together with a pediatric cochlear implant team based at Stanford Medical School, she has been applying NIRS to track changes in cortical hemodynamics in deaf children prior to and following cochlear implantation, and how that relates to their language outcomes.


Felipe Orihuela-Espina , Co-chair, is a senior lecturer in the Department of Computational Sciences at the Instituto Nacional de Astrofísica Óptica y Electrónica (INAOE) in Mexico. He is part of the Biosignals Processing and Medical Computing Lab where he leads the research line in neuroimage analysis. His research interests are data analysis and interpretation of neuroimages; mostly optical neuroimaging (fNIRS) but also to a smaller extent EEG and fMRI. He aims to develop alternative approaches to neuroimage interpretation using computational, statistical and topological elements.


Gemma Bale  is a Research Associate in the Biomedical Optics Research Laboratory in the Department of Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering at UCL. Her work focuses developing new near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) techniques for the measurement of cerebral oxygenation and metabolism, via cytochrome-c-oxidase. In particular, her PhD involved developing and demonstrating a novel broadband NIRS instrument to monitor neonatal brain injury in the intensive care unit.


Sabrina Brigadoi is a Research Associate in the Department of Developmental Psychology at the University of Padova, Italy. Her research focuses on advancing the applicability of diffuse optical techniques in both infant and adult population, with particular interest in signal processing techniques, image reconstruction and head model development. Furthermore, she is interested in employing fNIRS to study cognitive functions in both adults and infants.

Rens Burghardt

Rens Burghardt is a PhD Candidate in Surgery at the Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery and member of the Brain and Mind Institute, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. His research interests mainly lie in employing functional brain imaging to answer ongoing questions in communication sciences and disorders. Rens his work focuses particularly on employing fNIRS to uncover the neurocognitive mechanisms underlying hearing and hearing-related problems as well as applying these findings to improving hearing healthcare through machine learning applications.


Jeff Dunn is a Professor of Diagnostic Radiology in the Cumming School of Medicine at the University of Calgary. Much of his work is on brain: the ability of the brain to adapt to hypoxia, as well as regulation of oxygen delivery, blood flow and energy metabolism. He is the Director of the Experimental Imaging Centre, the main equipment being a 9.4T MRI and has been in the area of MRI development for pre-clinical models for over 25 years. With an interest in brain oxygenation, it was a logical step to include NIRS in the research programs. He is combining NIRS with MRI in the pre-clinical system to measure brain physiology and oxygenation in mouse models of neurodegeneration. He is also using quantitative NIRS and fNIRS to study brain activity and hypoxia in patients. He has a long standing interest in science communication and can often be found hanging out at @jeffreyfdunn.

Adam Eggebrecht  is an Instructor of Radiology in the Optical Radiology Laboratory at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, USA. His research is focused on developing diffuse optical tomography systems for basic research and clinical questions about human brain function. Adam is particularly interested in clinically relevant questions about brain development and how it is altered in autism as well as in brain plasticity and how it may be harnessed in recovery from a stroke in adult and pediatric populations.


Dani Forster is a PhD Candidate in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Melbourne, and conducts research in collaboration with the Mercy Hospital for Women in Heidelberg, Australia. Her research concerns neonates with Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy, and in particular investigating the altered cerebral haemodynamics associated with HIE with both NIRS and Doppler Ultrasound.


Xiao-Su Hu (Frank) is a Research Investigator in the Center for Human Growth and Development at University of Michigan. His research focuses on developing new methods for localization of fNIRS probes, preprocessing (motion corrections) and statistical analysis of pediatric and adult fNIRS data. Together with collaborators, he also contributed to applying fNIRS technique to a large range of functional neuroimaiging applications, clinical or non-clinical.


Kaja Jasinska is an Assistant Professor in Linguistics and Cognitive Science at the University of Delaware and a Research Scientist at Haskins Laboratories. She completed a PhD in Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Toronto. Her work uses neuroimaging technology (both fNIRS and MRI) in combination with genetic and behavioral analyses to study children’s language, reading, and cognitive development.


Chunming Lu obtained his Ph.D. in 2008 and now is an Associate Professor of Psychology at the State Key Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning, Beijing Normal University. His research focuses on the cognitive and neural mechanism of interpersonal communications in both normal and disordered population using multimodal imaging methods (e.g., fMRI/sMRI, EEG, and fNIRS). He is particularly interested in the hyperscanning studies on interpersonal social interactions in naturalistic environments.


Noman Naseer is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Mechatronics Engineering at Air University, Islamabad, Pakistan. He is also the head of Neurorobotics Research Group at Air University. He is originally a Robotics Engineer and completed his PhD in fNIRS-based BCIs from Pusan National University, South Korea in 2015. His research focuses on development of pattern recognition, classification and signal processing techniques for fNIRS-based BCIs.


Sérgio Novi is a PhD Candidate in the Laboratory of Biomedical Optics at the University of Campinas, Brazil. His research focuses on developing methods for functional connectivity involving multimodal neuroimaging with NIRS by employing a complex system’s approach. Over the last years, he has also contributed on applying novel time-series methods for functional NIRS in a variety of problems.


Yumie Ono is a Professor at School of Science and Technology, Meiji University, Japan. Her research interest is medical application of noninvasive functional brain imaging techniques of EEG, MEG, and fNIRS in diagnosis and rehabilitation. She is also conducting a research of diffuse correlation spectroscopy (DCS), a measurement of blood flow speed in the living tissue.



Luca Pollonini is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Engineering Technology at the University of Houston. His research interest is in development of NIRS instruments and analytical methods for functional brain imaging and tissue oxygenation. In addition, he is interested in functional brain connectivity and multimodal integration of fNIRS and EEG.



Felix Scholkmann is a research associate at the Biomedical Optics Research Laboratory of the University Hospital Zurich, University of Zurich, Switzerland. His research focuses on biomedical signal processing, biomedical optics (development and application of functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) for human optical neuroimaging), neuroscience, integrative human physiology and biophysics.


Meryem Ayşe Yücel is an Instructor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School and an Assistant in Biomedical Engineering at Massachusetts General Hospital.  She is an active contributor to the evolving field of fNIRS research and has directed and performed various fNIRS human imaging studies at the MGH Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, including fNIRS assessment of pain during surgery and bedside monitoring of patients with epilepsy.  Her current research interests span functional neuroimaging and cognitive science.