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Ryan Brindle, PhD

Postdoctoral Scholar

PhD, Cardiovascular Behavioral Medicine, University of Birmingham

Mentor: Martica Hall, PhD

BrindleRC@upmc.edu


Ryan is a postdoctoral scholar with the T32 Translational Research Training in Sleep Medicine program. He received his PhD in Cardiovascular Behavioral Medicine from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom, where his research focused on cardiovascular and autonomic nervous sytem responses to episodes of acute mental and physical stress. Ryan's current interests include applying his training in psychophysiology and stress and stress to sleep medicine in an effort ro better understand the interactions between sleep and stress and how these factors contrbute to the development and progression of cardiovascular disease.

Trainees

Ashlee Brooke McKeon, PhD

Postdoctoral Scholar

PhD, Rehabilitation Science, Univerity of Pittsburgh (2016)

Mentors: Anne Germain, PhD

mckeonab2@upmc.edu


Ashlee is a postdoctoral scholar with the T32 Translational Research Training in Sleep Medicine program. She received her doctorate in Rehabilitation Science at the University of Pittsburgh (2016) where her dissertation was on the isolation of physiological states as predictive factors of behavioral dysregulation in adults with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Prior to her dissertation research, much of Ashlee's work was on both human and mouse models examining sleep/wake behavior, mental health, and brain activity after trauma. In particular, she focused on the role of sleep on the onset and pervasiveness of daytime Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptomology in combat-exposed military veterans.  Ashlee is now merging together her experience in mental health, sleep, and clinical rehabilitation through a novel military-focused research track exploring sleep and PTSD as mediating factors in the relationship between combat-related TBI and cognitive functioning, and the long-term impact on rehabilitation outcomes.

Stephen Smagula, PhD

Postdoctoral Scholar

PhD, Epidemiology, University of Pittsburgh

Mentors: Howard Aizenstein, PhD, Martica Hall, PhD

sfs26@pitt.edu


Stephen is a postdoctoral scholar with the T32 Translational Research Training in Sleep Medicine program. Before joing the Sleep and Chronobiology Center, he was a postdoctoral scholar in Clinical and Translational Late-Life Mood Research.  His research focuses on understanding how sleep-wake behaviors across full 24-hour cycles, influence the biological mechanisms of late-life depression pathogenesis.  He also works as a sleep epidemiologist, primarily using actigraphy to objectively define sleep-wake phenotypes, and better understand their causes and consequences.

Heather Gunn, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

PhD, Clinical Psychology (Health Psychology track), University of Utah (2012)

Mentors: Daniel J. Buysse, MD; Wendy M. Troxel, PhD

gunnh@upmc.edu


As a trainee with the T32 Translational Research Training in Sleep Medicine program, Dr. Gunn's research focuses on sleep as a mechanism by which close interpersonal relationships are associated with health. In particular, she examines synchrony in sleep behaviors and how interpersonal behaviors influence sleep behaviors. For her dissertation, she objectively coded interpersonal responses to stress to identify specific types of behavior that were associated with subjective sleep.

               

Graduate Students

Laura B. Samuelsson

Graduate Student

MS, Clinical Psychology and Biological/Health Psychology, University of Pittsburgh (2013)

Mentor: Martica H. Hall, PhD

samuelssonlb@upmc.edu


Laura is pursuing a doctorate degree in the dual Clinical and Biological/Health Psychology program at the University of Pittsburgh. For her Master's thesis and subsequent work, she has developed novel scoring paradigms for objectively-assessed snoring and has investigated the relationships between objective snoring and indices of cardiometabolic health. Laura has a parallel research focus on the role of sleep disruption in mammary oncogenesis.

Briana J. Taylor

Pre-doctoral Trainee

MS, Health Psychology, University of Pittsburgh (2014)

Mentor: Martica H. Hall, PhD

milliganbj@upmc.edu


Briana is a third-year graduate student in the Biological and Health Psychology program. She recently defended her master's thesis, which examined cross-sectional and prospective relationships between indices of sleep timing and metabolic health. Briana's research interests focus on biological and behavioral rhythms with respect to cardiometabolic health and aging.

Marissa Bowman

Pre-doctoral Trainee

BA, University of Notre Dame (2016)

Mentor: Martica H. Hall, PhD

Clinical/Biological-Health Psychology Doctoral Student

Mabowman5@pitt.edu


Marissa is a first-year graduate student pursuing a doctoral degree in the dual Clinical and Biological/Health Psychology program at the University of Pittsburgh. She is interested in the bidirectional pathways between sleep and physical/mental health. More specifically, she studies sleep characteristics and rhythms in relation to cardiometabolic measures and emotion regulation, and is especially interested in these processes in individuals with insomnia, depression, or anxiety.





               

T32 Summer Medical Students

Christopher Mantik

T32 Summer Research Medical Student (MS-2)

BA, Classics, Occidental College (2008)

Mentor: Brant Hasler, PhD

Project: Sleep pattern effects on short-term affect in adolescents


Julia Nguyen

T32 Summer Research Medical Student (MS-2)

BS, Biology, Stanford University (2013)

Mentor: Anne Germain, PhD

Project: Effects of dose-dependent sleep disruption and gene-by-environment interactions on fear and response

               

T32 Training Alumni