Research Fellows

Postdoctoral:

Predoctoral:


.ekman.

Eve Ekman, PhD
Osher Fellow, NCCIH Postdoctoral Training Program in Research in Integrative Medicine (TRIM)
Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, UCSF

.

Eve Ekman’s research interests were inspired by her experience as a medical social worker in the emergency department of San Francisco General Hospital, coupled with her training in the applied emotion regulation and mindfulness intervention, Cultivating Emotional Balance (CEB). Eve received her masters degree from UC Berkeley in 2006, where she also received her doctorate from the Department of Social Welfare. Her dissertation case study, “Inside Insight, Opportunities for Meaning, Empathy and the Obstacles of Stress: An Exploratory Study and Pilot Training Among Juvenile Justice Officers,” provided an adapted CEB training for frontline juvenile justice staff (available online).

At the UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, Eve has been developing, delivering and evaluating a curriculum for residents called Supporting Provider Resilience by Upping Compassion and Empathy (SPRUCE). SPRUCE supports graduate medical education competencies of professionalism, empathy and interpersonal communication for medical resident learners.  This curriculum is also based in CEB, with a combination of brief guided mediation and emotion regulation training in a supportive group setting. Eve is also piloting EmoTrak, an ecological momentary assessment of emotion, to track the daily experiences of residents throughout their busy work days. Eve, along with her father Dr. Paul Ekman, spent the last three years creating an emotion awareness training tool at the request of the Dalia Lama, the Atlas of Emotions.


Dr. Eve Ekman: “The Alchemy of Empathy: Transforming Stress into Meaning at Work “


burcu
Burcu Hasdemir, PhD
Osher Fellow, NCCIH Postdoctoral Training Program in Research in Integrative Medicine (TRIM)
Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, UCSF

.
.

Burcu Hasdemir holds a PhD in Cellular and Molecular Physiology from the University of Liverpool in the UK. She came to UCSF for her postdoctoral training in the field of G-protein coupled receptors and inflammatory diseases. Her specific focus has been on neuropeptides and receptors involved in the body’s response to chronic stress. During the course of her training, she developed an increasing interest in the physiology behind the mind-body connection. As a TRIM postdoctoral fellow, she hopes to build on her interests in Integrative Medicine research and investigate the effects of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) on pregnancy and fetal health. To delineate the molecular and cellular effects of MBSR during pregnancy, she is studying the human placenta and related tissues in collaboration with the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences at UCSF.


Dr. Burcu Hasdemir at the 2016 Postdoc Slam:
“Relaxed or Stressed?
The Placenta Foretells the Fetal Future”


Jason Thompson.

Jason Thompson, PhD
Osher Fellow, NCCIH Postdoctoral Training Program in Research in Integrative Medicine (TRIM)
Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, UCSF

.

Jason Thompson, PhD is a clinical psychologist whose research interests focus on the scope of compassion and mindfulness-based interventions to buffer or repair the adverse impact of toxic stress and trauma. Jason’s doctoral dissertation investigated the neural and linguistic correlates of decentering, a mechanism of mindfulness.

He completed his predoctoral internship and clinical postdoctoral fellowship at the UCSF/San Francisco General Hospital Child and Adolescent Services multicultural clinical training program. Prior to psychology, he worked as a journalist in the UK and as a public school teacher in Oakland. He has practiced Zen meditation and hatha yoga for ten years, and is an ultramarathon runner.

At the Osher Center, Jason is developing a school-based intervention for trauma-exposed adolescents, integrating contemplative practices and social justice-oriented education. His TRIM fellowship research includes collaboration with and learning from UCSF researchers in two labs, one focused on a neuroimaging analysis of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) for treatment-resistant depression (Dr. Daniel Mathalon, PI), and the other on the biological embedding of toxic stress (Drs. Nicki Bush and Tom Boyce, PIs). He hopes to integrate learning from these two domains to enhance scientific understanding of child and adolescent trauma and its principles of therapeutic recovery, and generate strategies to increase equitable access to effective trauma intervention.


weng.

Helen Y. Weng, PhD
Osher Fellow, NCCIH Postdoctoral Training Program in Research in Integrative Medicine (TRIM)
Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, UCSF
.
.

Helen Weng, PhD is a clinical psychologist and neuroscientist who studies the impact of mindfulness and compassion meditation interventions on relational functioning and physical and mental health.  She is interested in how contemplative practices can improve relationships, and how this plasticity may be represented in the brain.  She would like to identify relational functioning as an important avenue through which mindfulness and compassion interventions may improve physical and mental health.

Helen is particularly interested in using multivariate functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) techniques to capture the variability in which individuals’ neural functioning may change through contemplative interventions, and relate these changes to meaningful behavioral and health outcomes.  She is also interested in emotional coherence (cohesion across multiple emotional response channels), and how mindfulness and compassion interventions may enhance both intrapersonal and interpersonal coherence.  As a TRIM postdoctoral fellow, she will study the impact of mind-body interventions on metabolic syndrome and social stress, and relational processing in depressed adolescents.

Helen received her PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in clinical psychology.  Her clinical interests include integrating emotion-focused, mindfulness, and interpersonal process approaches to psychotherapy to treat mood disorders, with particular emphasis on the therapeutic relationship as a route to health.  She has taught contemplative interventions in individual settings with adults and teenagers, and in group settings for individuals with anxiety, borderline personality disorder traits, and HIV.   Helen values integrating multicultural approaches in her work and communication.


Dr. Helen Weng: “This is Your Brain on Meditation:
How Meditation Impacts the Brain and Implications for Health”


Elie_Adler_web.

Elizabeth Adler, BA
Osher Fellow, NCCIH Predoctoral Training Program in Research in Integrative Medicine (TRIM)
Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, UCSF

.

Elizabeth “Elie” Adler is a medical student at Mount Sinai in New York City. She is interested in mind-body medicine and the potential for yoga to improve the lives of patients undergoing chemotherapy, as well as patients living with chronic illness.

Elie first became interested in integrative medicine as an undergrad at Brown University, where she studied International Development Studies. As a medical student, Elie has been a leader of Mount Sinai’s Students For Integrative Medicine. As a yoga teacher, she has led yoga classes and meditation sits for all members of the Mount Sinai community. During her third year of medical school, Elie was selected by her peers to receive The Art of Medicine Award, recognizing her ability to “demonstrate an exceptional ability to blend medical knowledge with an understanding of the multidimensional aspects of healing.” Elie has conducted field research in Nepal, India, China, South Africa, and East Harlem. She is particularly committed to the Integrative Medicine for the Underserved (IM4US) movement.

Elie is thrilled to be taking a scholarly year at The Osher Center, mentored by Dr. Anand Dhruva. She will be investigating the impact of yoga on chemotherapy side effects, as well as digestive health.


Maya.

Maya Mascarenhas, MPH
Osher Fellow, NCCIH Predoctoral Training Program in Research in Integrative Medicine (TRIM)
Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, UCSF
.

Maya Mascarenhas’ research centers on understanding how to increase and maintain healthy behaviors over the lifespan. She plans to focus on physical activity and is interested in the role of mindfulness as a potential mediator of this behavior. Maya is also interested in using technology to develop and test physical activity interventions. More broadly, she wants to explore the role of technology as a tool for developing user centered interventions that have the potential to scale.

Maya graduated with an MPH in Epidemiology and Biostatistics from UC Berkeley. She is currently a PhD student in the UCSF Epidemiology and Translational Science doctoral program.

Print Friendly