Lab & Team

Dr. Clifford Cassidy

Dr. Cassidy’s research program is focused on using multimodal neuroimaging methods to understand brain mechanisms of psychopathology. He has a long-standing interest in the role of the dopamine system in reward processing in schizophrenia and addiction. His graduate training at McGill University was focused on basic neuroscience (MSc) and clinical research (PhD) in schizophrenia. He completed postdoctoral training focused on neuroimaging methods at Columbia University within the Division of Translational Imaging under the mentorship of Anissa Abi-Dargham and Guillermo Horga.


Since arriving at The Royal in 2016, Dr. Cassidy has continued his neuroimaging work in schizophrenia and expanded to the study of PTSD and other neuropsychiatric conditions. His goal is to bridge the gap between the problems faced by individuals with mental illness and the technical challenges of understanding brain function. By bringing his expertise in these two disparate questions he strives towards a more scientific understanding of human experience. Such insights serve to advance neuroscience and could also improve mental health outcomes, particularly when they can explain psychiatric risk or improve strategies for early intervention and prevention of conditions such as PTSD and schizophrenia.

Rosaria Furlano

Research Coordinator

Rosaria Furlano recently completed her PhD in Developmental Psychology at Queen’s University. Her Master’s and Doctoral research focused on social and cognitive development in individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders and mental health concerns. She has always had an interest in mental health and is excited to apply her research experience to projects that examine the relationship between brain and behaviour in individuals with neuropsychiatric conditions

Giuliana Borracci

Lab Manager

Giuliana Borracci completed her Bachelor of Cognitive Science with a specialization in Cognition and Psychology at Carleton University. She joined Dr. Cassidy’s team at the Royal in 2017 and has been contributing experimental and administrative support for all active projects.

Alicia Ouskine

Research Assistant 

Alicia Ouskine is in her fourth year at Carleton University studying Cognitive Science with a specialization in Cognition and Computation. She plays a critical role in data analysis by using MatLab software and has been assisting in various active projects. 



Royal Ottawa Institute of Mental Health Research 

Col. Rakesh Jetly, MD

Head, Centre of Excellence on Mental Health, Directorate of Mental Health, Canadian Armed Forces Health Services

David Attwood, MD

Clinical Director, Integrated Schizophrenia and Recovery Program

Lauri Tuominen, MD, PhD


Jakov Shlik, MD, PhD

Clinical Director, Operational Stress Injury Clinic

Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY

Guillermo Horga, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychiatry

Diana Martinez, MD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry 

Un Jung Kang, MD

Chief, Movement Disorders Division, Department of Neurology

Institute of Biomedical Technology, Milan, Italy

Luigi Zecca, MD, PhD

Senior Researcher, Italian National Research Council