Prof. Geva's Lab
Head - Developmental Neuropsychology Lab
Prof. Ronny Geva of the Leslie and Susan Gonda (Goldschmied) Multidisciplinary Brain Research Center studies the evolving relationships between brain networks and behavior.
Her main methodologies are long-term tracking of infants, toddlers and older children at-risk for attention deficit disorders and emotion regulation disorders, as well as conduction of clinically controlled manipulations aimed to restrict the effects of the diagnosed abnormality.
Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience
Geva’s research focuses on neuropsychological, electrophysiological and imaging studies in neonates. These include DTI, eye-tracking and ABR studies to explore the inter-relationships among these measures in neonates, toddlers and children, and to observe the expected behavioral patterns of detected abnormalities as the infants develop.
Brain Development in Premature Infants
Geva’s team is primarily conducting large-scale, long-term follow-up studies of premature neonates with and without neural dysfunctions, to examine self-regulation of behavior, attention regulation and emotional responses.
These projects postulate that emerging buds for higher-order functions depend upon fetal programming and the systems' capacity to handle stimulation in the first postnatal phases.
This research encompasses studies on domains frequently affected in premature infants, such as sleep and feeding regulation disorders, language and communication deficits, attention disorders and deficiencies in early precursors of executive functions. By clarifying the earliest markers of developmental problems, Geva’s work is paving the way toward earlier and more effective preventative interventions.
Emotional Regulation in Attention Deficit Disorder
In another area of her research, Geva is examining working memory, emotional reactivity and impulse control in young children and young adults being treated for attention deficit, and is also studying how emotional regulation affects cognitive processes of children and adults as they navigate complex social situations. This line of research involves specific high risk populations, such as children with epilepsy and children diagnosed with genetic syndromes.
Early Markers of ADHD
A central focus of Geva's work concentrates on development of clinically sound procedures for early diagnosis of attention regulation deficits in infants and toddlers. The line of research explores the predictive value of attention evaluations that are conducted during the first weeks and months of life, in order to identify infants who are more likely to exhibit full-blown attention deficits with or without hyperactivity.
Research work conducted at Geva's lab in collaboration with the neonatal intensive care units at Sheba and Souraski Tel Aviv medical centers is highly promising for developing paradigms to evaluate attention regulation at the early phases of life.
Geva and her team are currently engaged in several large scale longitudinal studies to examine the predictive power of these measures and in the development of intervention protocols to limit the frequency and severity of ADHD symptoms in targeted participants.