Aikaterini (Katerina) Fotopoulou, Reader, studied cognitive neuropsychology and theoretical psychoanalysis at UCL before completing her PhD in cognitive neuroscience at the University of Durham, UK. She is currently a Reader at the Psychoanalysis Unit, Psychology and Language Sciences Division, University College London and a research affiliate at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at the same university. There she researches body feelings, sensorimotor signals and related body representations in healthy individuals and in patients with neurological and psychiatric disorders of body unawareness.
Her research at Katlab is funded by Volkswagen Foundation (Germany), HDRF (US), ISAN (Israel) and more recently a Starting Investigator Grant from the European Research Council. Current research projects focus on the psychological and neural mechanisms by which our interoceptive body feelings, as well as multimodal representations of the body, are influenced by internalised social expectations, on-line interactions with other people and by neuropeptides known to enhance social feelings. These studies point to unique neural mechanisms by which our bodies are interpersonally ‘mentalised’ and perceived to form the basis of our selves.
Katerina is the founder of the International Association for the Study of Affective Touch (IASAT) and the Secretary of the International Neuropsychoanalysis Society. She is the editor of the volume: Fotopoulou, A. Conway, M.A. Pfaff, D. From the Couch to the Lab: Trends in Psychodynamic Neuroscience. Oxford University Press, 2012.