Virginia E. Sturm, PhD

Virginia E. Sturm, PhD
PhD, University of California, Berkeley
Assistant Professor, Memory and Aging Center, Department of Neurology, UCSF
Phone: (415) 476-8618
Fax: (415) 476-0213
Email: [email protected]

UCSF Profiles

CAN (Clinical Affective Neuroscience) Laboratory

UCSF Memory and Aging Center

Research Interests:

The overall goal of my research is to determine the biological basis of emotional symptoms in neurodegenerative disease. I completed my graduate work in clinical psychological science and neuropsychology and have extensive training in autonomic nervous system physiology and facial expression. In the majority of my previous studies I have used a laboratory-based approach to identify areas of emotional dysfunction in frontotemporal dementia (FTD). I integrate autonomic and behavioral measures of emotional reactivity with structural and functional connectivity neuroimaging techniques to identify how specific neural system alterations relate to affective decline. This approach has offered novel insights into the ways in which deterioration of emotion-relevant brain networks relates to decline in visceromotor emotional outflow. My background in psychology, neuropsychology, affective science, and neuroscience will enable me to provide multidisciplinary training to future fellows in this T32.

Professional Honors and Awards:

  • 1996 Ignatian Scholarship, Georgetown University
  • 2002 Outstanding Employee Award, University of California, San Francisco
  • 2003 Student Poster Award, Society for Psychophysiological Research
  • 2003 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, Honorable Mention
  • 2003 – 2006 Ruth L. Kirschtein National Research Service Award Predoctoral Institutional Training Grant in Affective Science
  • 2006 Sheldon J. Korchin Dissertation Award, University of California, Berkeley
  • 2009 Young Scientist Award, Alzheimer’s Association of Northern California and Northern Nevada, Honorable Mention
  • 2010 – 2012 Hellman Memory & Aging Fellow
  • 2013 Rising Star Award, Association for Psychological Science

Selected Publications:

  1. Sturm, V. E., Allison, S. C., Rosen, H. J., Miller, B. L., & Levenson, R. W. (2006). Self- conscious emotion deficits in frontotemporal lobar degeneration. Brain, 129(9), 2508-2516.
  2. Seeley, W. W. & Sturm, V. E. (2006). Self-representation and the frontal lobes. In B. L. Miller & J. L. Cummings (Eds.), The human frontal lobes: Functions and disorders (2nd ed., pp. 317- 334). New York: The Guilford Press.
  3. Sturm, V. E., Ascher, E. A., Miller, B. L., & Levenson, R. W. (2008). Diminished self-conscious emotional responding in frontotemporal lobar degeneration patients. Emotion, 8(6), 861-869. PMCID: PMC2733345
  4. Sturm, V. E., Sollberger, M., Seeley, W. W., Rankin, K. P., Ascher, E. A., Rosen, H. J., Miller, B. L., Levenson, R. W. (2013). Role of right pregenual anterior cingulate cortex in self-conscious emotional reactivity. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 8(4), 468-474. PMCID: PMC3624960
  5. Sturm, V. E., McCarthy, M. E., Yun, I., Madan, A., Yuan, J. W., Holley, S. R., Ascher, E. A., Boxer, A. L., Miller, B. L., Levenson, R. W. (2010). Mutual gaze patterns in couples with Alzheimer's disease, frontotemporal dementia, and semantic dementia. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. PMCID: PMC3110436
  6. Sturm, V. E. & Levenson, R. W. (2010). Alexithymia in neurodegenerative disease. Neurocase, 17(3), 242-250. PMCID: PMC3278303
  7. Eckart, J. A., Sturm, V. E., Miller, B. L., & Levenson, R. W. (2012). Diminished disgust reactivity in behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia. Neuropsychologia, 50(5), 786-790. PMCID: PMC3309072
  8. Guo, C. C., Sturm, V. E., Zhou, J., Gennatas, E. D., Trujillo, A. J., Hua, A. Y., Crawford, R., Stables, L., Kramer, J. H., Rankin, K., Levenson, R. W., Rosen, H. J., Miller, B. L., Seeley, W. W. Dominant hemisphere lateralization of cortical parasympathetic control as revealed by frontotemporal dementia. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 113(17), E2430-2439. PMCID: PMC4855566
  9. Perry, D. C., Sturm, V. E., Wood, K. A., Miller, B. L., & Kramer, J. H. (2013). Divergent Processing of Monetary and Social Reward in Behavioral Variant Frontotemporal Dementia and Alzheimer Disease. Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders. PMCID: PMC4000284
  10. Perry, D. C., Sturm, V. E., Seeley, W. W., Miller, B. L., Kramer, J. H., & Rosen, H. J. (2014). Anatomical correlates of reward-seeking behaviours in behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia. Brain, 137(Pt 6), 1621-1626. PMCID: PMC4032100
  11. Sturm, V. E., Yokoyama, J. S., Eckart, J. A., Zakrzewski, J., Rosen, H. J., Miller, B. L., Seeley, W. W., Levenson, R. W. (2015). Damage to left frontal regulatory circuits produces greater positive emotional reactivity in frontotemporal dementia. Cortex, 64, 55-67. PMCID: PMC4346386
  12. Levenson, R. W., Ascher, E., Goodkind, M., McCarthy, M., Sturm, V., & Werner, K. (2008). Chapter 25 Laboratory testing of emotion and frontal cortex. Handbook of Clinical Neurology, 88, 489-498.
  13. Levenson, R. W., Sturm, V. E., & Haase, C. M. (2014). Emotional and behavioral symptoms in neurodegenerative disease: a model for studying the neural bases of psychopathology. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 10, 581-606. PMCID: PMC3980958
  14. Goodkind, M. S., Sturm, V. E., Ascher, E. A., Shdo, S. M., Miller, B. L., Rankin, K. P., Levenson, R. W. (2015). Emotion recognition in frontotemporal dementia and Alzheimer's disease: A new film-based assessment. Emotion, 15(4), 416-427. PMCID: PMC4551420
  15. Sturm, V. E., Yokoyama, J. S., Seeley, W. W., Kramer, J. H., Miller, B. L., & Rankin, K. P. (2013). Heightened emotional contagion in mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease is associated with temporal lobe degeneration. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 110(24), 9944-9949. PMCID: PMC3683715

Complete List of Published Work in My Bibliography: escending