RESEARCH GROUP

I am very privileged to work with a team of young, talented and enthusiastic people from very different academic and cultural backgrounds. I am a great believer in good team work and we learn a lot from each other. Academia and research always requires team effort and I am very proud of all the creative and fascinating projects we are working on. We have lots of fun too...

Jess Kerr-Gaffney, 
Masters and PhD student, 2016-present

Supervisors: Dr Kate Tchanturia and Dr Amy Harrison

Project: Socio-emotional Cognition in Anorexia Nervosa

I studied Psychology at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, before moving to London in 2016, where I began my MSc in Mental Health Studies. For my masters project I worked with Kate and Heather Westwood to test a new measure of alexithymia in women with anorexia nervosa and healthy controls. I am now about to start my PhD, where I will investigate the effects of comorbid autistic traits and social anxiety on social cognition in anorexia nervosa. Outside of my studies, I love exploring London, particularly galleries and museums, and socialising with friends.

You can read more about my research here

Emma Kinnaird

PhD Student, 2017-Present

Supervisors: Dr Kate Tchanturia and Dr Catherine Stewart

Project: “Beyond the stereotypes: characterising the unique features of under-researched eating disorder populations, and implications for treatment”

After studying English Language and Literature at Oxford University, I completed a psychology conversion MSc at the University of Glasgow. I first became interested in eating disorder research after writing my dissertation on male eating disorders. Working in mental health research in the NHS, and on an eating disorder unit, confirmed that this was an area that I wanted to work in, and led me to apply for a PhD. When I’m not studying my hobbies include playing rugby and playing piano.   

You can read more about my research here.

 

Lucia Giombini

PhD Student, 2016-Present

Supervisors: Dr Kate Tchanturia, Dr Abigail Easter

Project: “Evaluation of individual Cognitive Remediation Therapy in an inpatient eating disorder service for children and adolescents”.

In my research work I evaluate new treatments for anorexia nervosa focused on improving cognitive and emotional processes. Please, visit the following website for more information about the clinical and research work I conduct: www.luciagiombini.com

I hope that progress in research and treatment will help us to raise young people who appreciate themselves and their own bodies, and treat them with respect.

I am a Chartered Clinical Psychologist, accredited by the British Psychological Society and recognised as Associate Fellow (AFBPsS). I have considerable experience of treating Eating Disorders (EDs) in all age ranges, and the pathologies associated with them (e.g. Obsessive Compulsive Disorders, Depression, Anxiety, Phobias).

Outside of my work, I am a compulsive reader, an outdoor activities explorer, and a fan of various forms of visual art.

You can read more about my research here

 

Jenni Leppanen

My principle research interests include examining the neural processes that underlie socio-emotional difficulties in AN, and how these processes contribute to duration of illness and treatment response.

I am currently finishing my PhD, which involved exploring neural responses to socio-emotional stimuli in AN as well as the potential of the neuropeptide, oxytocin, in targeting elevated anxiety and socio-emotional difficulties in AN. In October 2017, I will begin working on the BEACON study, investigating the neural correlates of neurocognitive and socio-emotional processing in young people with AN and those recovered from AN.

You can read more about my research here

 

Marcela Marin Dapelo, PhD (2012-2015)

 

Presently Post-Doctoral Researcher

Supervisors: Dr. Kate Tchanturia and Prof. Robin Morris 
Project: “Emotion recognition and expression in individuals with Eating Disorders"

 
I am a Chilean clinical researcher interested in the link between emotions and eating behaviour in people with eating disorders. After working as a research project clinician at the Centre for Overcoming Problem Eating of the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in Pittsburgh (United States), I came to London to do a PhD with Kate as my supervisor. On 2016 I graduated with the thesis "Emotion recognition and expression in individuals with eating disorders".  I enjoyed the experience so much that I stayed in Kate's lab as a postdoc. I am currently working on many exciting projects investigating facial feedback and imitation of emotional expressions in people with eating disorders, co-supervising masters students, and learning to translate our research into clinical practice. In my spare time, I enjoy watching movies with my hubby, playing with my son, and acting.

You can read more about my research here

Katie Lang, PhD (2012-2015)

Presently Post-Doctoral Research Associate

My research has focused on investigating neuropsychological and socio-emotional processing in children and adolescents with AN, and improving knowledge of how such characteristics may be important in the pathogenesis and maintenance of AN.

I am currently working on the BEACON study, a brain imaging project investigating the neural correlates of neurocognitive and socio-emotional processing in young people with AN and in individuals that have recovered from AN. 

In October 2017 I will be leaving the Eating Disorder Research Unit to begin the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, but I will continue to collaborate with Kate's research lab. 

You can read more about my research here.

Heather Westwood

 

PhD Student, 2014-present

Supervisors: Dr Kate Tchanturia and Dr Will Mandy

Project: An investigation of symptoms associated wtih autism spectrum disorder in females with anorexia nervosa

I have just finished my PhD, which focused on the presence and possible clinical implications of elevated symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in females with anorexia nervosa. My research suggests that ASD is over-represented in eating disorders, particularly in anorexia nervosa, which can be associated with difficulties with social interaction and flexibility. I will shortly be starting clinical psychology training at Royal Holloway University of London but will continue to collaborate with Dr Tchanturia on research in the future. I have a particular interest in translating research into clinical practice. 

You can read more about my research here.

James Adamson, MSc (2015-2020)

Clinical Researcher

I am currently working full time on a quality improvement project called iCASK at the national inpatient eating disorders service, assessing whether a novel intervention can help patients and families with transitions and therefore patients have better outcomes post discharge. My research interests are translational research, especially interventions in eating disorders. My current research focus is on treatment response to psychological interventions and comparing outcomes for those patients who have high levels of autistic traits with those with low levels. Outside of research, I enjoy trying new restaurants, travelling to new countries and delving into new hobbies (my current one is baking sourdough!).

You can read more about my research here
Khatuna Dolidze and Ia Shekriladze
Kate is currently working as a visiting professor of Clinical Psychology in Illia State University, Tbilisi, Georgia. 
Khatuna, right, finished her PhD in 2014. 
Ia, left, is in the final stages of her PhD about cross cultural aspects of eating disorders. 
Both Ia and Khatuna have published work in international peer reviewed journals. Kate hope to build a strong team of clinical psychologists in her home country, who can easily communicate and disseminate research internationally. 

 

Many thanks to all of my past contributors

Hannah Cribben

 

I am currently completing my undergraduate studies in Experimental Psychology at University of Oxford. I am interested in specialising in eating disorders in the future, and have thoroughly enjoyed my time working in Kate's lab (Summer 2017). Throughout my time here I have worked alongside Dr Katie Lang on the BEACON study - a brain imaging study for young people with anorexia nervosa. The main aim of this study is to examine the neural underpinnings of observed inefficiencies in cognitive and emotional processing in children and adolescents with anorexia nervosa. 

Eli Doris, BSc

 

I work part time as an assistant psychologist at the SLaM eating disorders unit, under the supervision of Dr Tchanturia. My role involves a combination of conducting neuropsychological assessments, managing the clinical audit, and contributing to new and ongoing research projects. I am also studying for an MSc in mental health at King’s College London. I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of Oxford and have also worked as a research assistant at the Institute of Psychiatry.  In my spare time, I enjoy socializing with friends and travelling to new places.

Yasemin Dandil and Katherine Smith, MSc (2018-2020)

Assistant Psychologists / Clinical Researchers

Yasemin and Katherine are assistant psychologists in the clinical inpatient treatment program helping with a clinical audit, co-facilitating therapeutic groups and organising wellbeing workshops for staff and patients..

kate tchanturia, eating disorders, research group, research team, nick lao-kaim, Master of science, MSc, neuroimaging
Nick Lao-Kaim, MSc

 

I completed my BSc in Psychology at the University of St Andrews before embarking on the Neuroimaging MSc here at KCL. During this time I worked with Kate on the BRCACE fMRI project, aiming to identify the neuro-correlates of working memory in people with Anorexia. My current focus as an RA involves characterising the neural patterns of other well-known cognitive inefficiencies e.g. cognitive flexibility, that people with Anorexia often show, with the hope that this will inform future therapies.

 

Aside from fMRI analysis, I spend my days playing football, tennis or golf and if the heavens should grant a glimmer of sunshine you can find me at the beach, attempting to catch some gnarly surf!  I also indulge in a bit of baking from time to time, but I still haven't made the perfect macaron =(.  

kate tchanturia, eating disorders, research group, research team, amy harrison, PhD
Dr. Amy Harrison, PhD

 

Completed PhD with Prof Janet Treasure (lead supervisor) and Kate (co-supervisor).

My DClinPsy, supervised by Dr Kate Tchanturia, I have conducted a research project which aimed to explore social anhedonia and work and social functioning in people with eating disorders relative to people who have successfully recovered from an eating disorder and healthy controls. The clinical implications of this work have contributed towards the development of a novel treatment intervention which Dr Tchanturia and I are planning to develop and evaluate in the future. Having completed my PhD and clinical psychology training, I will be going to work at a specialist inpatient unit for young people with eating disorders as a Clinical Psychologist.

Olivia and Jenna are qualified clinical psychologists. In 2007-2009, using a qualitative approach, they helped to explore service users' and clinicians' views on newly adapted Cognitive Remediation therapy for anorexia.

 

This is the graduation ceremony in 2008.

 

Whitney J. Easter, A. Tchanturia K (2008) Service users' feedback on cognitive training in the treatment of anorexia nervosa: a qualitative study. International Journal of Eating Disorders; 41(6):542-50

 

Kyriacou O, Easter A, Tchanturia K (2009) Comparing views of patients, parents and clinicians on emotions in anorexia: A qualitative study. Journal of Health Psychology. 14(7) 843–854

Helen Davies, PhD (2008-2011)

 

Helen Davies worked as a researcher for seven years at the Institute of Psychiatry Eating Disorders Unit, King’s College London.  She was involved in translational research, contributing to the development of a cognitive remediation programme for people with anorexia nervosa. 

 

Helen completed her PhD in 2012 on the expression of emotion in eating disorders and is currently undertaking her training in clinical psychology at the University of Exeter. 

Samantha Lloyd, PhD (2012-2015

 

PhD Student, 2012-2015
Supervisors: Dr Kate Tchanturia and Prof. Ulrike Schmidt

 Project: "Exploring Perfectionism in Anorexia Nervosa"
 
Before starting my PhD I completed my MSc at the IoP in Mental Health Services Research.  I have previously worked as Research Assistant at an inpatient adolescent eating disorder unit in Cambridge, as well as at the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Unit at King’s.   In my spare time I enjoy travelling to far flung places, socialising with friends and running. 

 

kate tchanturia, eating disorders, research group, research team, nick lao-kaim, Master of science, MSc, neuroimaging
Charlotte Rhind, PhD (2012-2015)

 

PhD Student 2012-2015

Supervisors: Prof Janet Treasure and Dr Kate Tchanturia

Project: “An examination of the feasibility, acceptability and effectiveness of a skills based intervention for adolescents with eating disorders”

After studying Psychology at Durham University I completed the MSc Research Methods in Psychology at UCL. I’ve worked in varying roles across mental health services and more recently as an Assistant Psychologist at an inpatient service for young people with eating disorders. This provided me with fantastic experience in preparation for my PhD - a multi-site randomized controlled trial evaluating the ‘Experienced Carers Helping Others’ intervention as a treatment “add-on” for adolescent anorexia nervosa sufferers. This NIHR RfPB-funded project hopes to improve patient outcomes by reducing caregiver distress and ameliorating interpersonal maintaining factors.

Marion Roberts, PhD (2006-2009)

 

"Cognitive flexibility and weak coherence as neurocognitive endophenotypes of anorexia and bulimia nervosa" 


Supervisors Prof. Janet Treasure and Dr. Kate Tchanturia


After a post-doc at the University of London, Marion returned to her native New Zealand and is currently raising a family & undergoing part-time clinical training. 
 

Leon Fonville, MSc

 

I completed my undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands and went on to do a postgraduate degree in Neuroimaging at King's College London. After the MSc I started working with Dr. Kate Tchanturia in the eating disorders department as a researcher on the BRCACE project, funded by the Swiss Anorexia Foundation. I’ve been able to analyse and write up study results on brain anatomy, as well as assessing brain function using tasks measuring emotion processing and central coherence. With the BRCACE project we’re trying to gain more insight into the neurocognitive profile of anorexia nervosa and a better understanding of the brain in anorexia nervosa

Carolina Lopez, PhD (2005-2008)

 

“An examination of central coherence in eating disorders and its clinical implications"

 

Supervisors Prof. Janet Treasure and Dr. Kate Tchanturia


Carolina has returned to Chile and continues to work in clinical psychology, teaching and research. 
 

Naima Lounes, MSc, DClin Trainee

 

Dissertation title: "Cognitive Remediation Therapy in Anorexia - inpatient setting"

 

Supervisor: Dr. Kate Tchanturia

 

After completing her masters degree in Mental Health Studies at King’s College London, Naima is now doing her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at Salomons (2011-present)

 

 

David Hambrook, MSc, DClin Psy

 

MSc 2006-2007: “Empathy, Systemising, Autistic Traits and Machiavellian Intelligence in Anorexia Nervosa".

Supervisor: Dr Kate Tchanturia


DClinPsy 2008-2011: “A Pilot Study Exploring Performance-based Emotional Intelligence in Anorexia Nervosa”.

Supervisors: Dr Kate Tchanturia and Dr Gary Brown

Currently working as a Clinical Psychologist for the South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

kate tchanturia, eating disorders, research group, research team, nick lao-kaim, Master of science, MSc, neuroimaging
Antonia Koskina, DClinPsy Trainee

 

Supervisors: Dr Vicki Mountford and Dr Kate Tchanturia

Project: "Somatoform Dissociation and Body Image Instability in Eating Disorders"

I completed my BSc in Psychology at the University of Newcastle and gained a number of years experience working in eating disorders as a Support Worker in an inpatient eating disorder unit in York, my hometown.  After a brief spell as an Assistant Psychologist in adult services, I returned as a Research Worker within the Section of Eating Disorders at the IoP. Currently I am in the final year of my Doctorate in Clinical Psychology and am conducting a research project which aims to explore somatoform dissociation and body image instability in people with eating disorders. In my spare time I enjoy running, cycling, cooking and baking, and travelling.

Felicitas Weineck & Eliz Fidanboylu

 

MSc Students from the Mental Health Studies Program.

 

Felicitas' dissertation focuses on the exploration of similarities between anorexia and autism. 

 

Eliz is evaluating and carrying out an audit of the day care treatment programme.


Both students took the "women’s mental health" module, which Kate leads, and conducted their research and clinical placements with Kate in 2012-2013.

Emma Smith

 

I spent a year working as an assistant Psychologist in the inpatient EDU, with clinical responsibilities that included managing the clinical audit, working with individuals using CRT and CREST manualised interventions and conducting neuropsychological assessments. I was also able to contribute to ongoing research within the department and helped supervise MSc projects. I have gained a huge amount during my time working with Kate; learning how to work motivationally with patients, juggling clinical and research tasks and experiencing the academic publication and peer review process. I will miss the wonderful team but am not going far as I'm leaving to take up a place on the DClinPsy at the IoP.  In my spare time I like to get out and about, rock climbing, cycling or escaping the city for a camping weekend!

Amanda Waldman, DClin Psy

 

DClinPsy 2008-2012: “Haptic Perception, Perfectionism and Body Image in Anorexia Nervosa”
 

Supervisors: Dr. Kate Tchanturia and Dr. Victoria Mountford
 
After completing clinical training at the Institute of Psychiatry, Amanda is now working as a clinical psychologist with a "Looked After Children’s Team" in London.