Mentor: Dr. Mark Lewis
College of Medicine
"Personal interest in the field."
Microbiology and Cell Science
- University Scholars Program (2017-2018)
- Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Community Chair (2014-2015)
- Cystic Fibrosis (CF) Climb UF Vice President (2015-2016)
- Friends for Life of America at UF (FFL) (Positions held - Community Service Chair, Treasurer, President) (2015-2018)
- Ronald McDonald House through Friends for Life
- Arts and Crafts at Shands through Friends for Life
- Noah's Endeavor through Friends for Life
Hobbies and Interests
- Shadowing at the Springhill and Kanapaha Emergency Departments
Multimodal Neuroimaging of the Basal Ganglia in Autism Spectrum Disorder and Relationships to Repetitive Behavior
Restrictive repetitive behavior (RRB), such as insistence on sameness, self-injury, motor stereotypy, compulsions and rituals, are seemingly purposeless patterns of behavior that occur with high frequency and interfere with normal behaviors. RRB is diagnostic for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and present in other neurodevelopmental disorders. Neuroimaging studies have identified morphological alterations in the basal ganglia of individuals with ASD that are correlated with higher rates of RRB. In this study, we will assess morphology and structural connectivity in the basal ganglia of children with ASD and typically developing controls using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) data acquired from the National Database for Autism Research. We will also assess how these neuroimaging measures relate to measures of RRB from the Autism Diagnostic Interview–Revised among children with ASD. Novel findings from this study may increase understanding of the neural circuitry mediating RRB in ASD, and provide potential targets for biologically based treatments. Results from this study may also provide targets for more detailed mechanistic investigations in animal models of RRB.