Mario A. Parra Rodríguez MD, PhD

                                                                                                                                                                                     UL-BCRN Google+            View Mario Parra's profile on LinkedIn

General details

Assistant Professor
Heriot-Watt University, Psychology 
School of Life Sciences
David Brewster Building
Room 2.67

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Research Interests

Cognitive mechanisms underlying normal and abnormal ageing. Cognitive and behavioural changes in neurodegenerative diseases, with emphasis on Alzheimer’s Disease. The investigation of functional brain changes (fMRI and ERPs) in the course of dementing illnesses and other brain disorders. Development of cognitive tests for the early detection of dementia with emphasis on Alzheimer’s disease.

From 2003 I have also been interested in the cognitive mechanisms underlying violent behaviours. The UL-Latin America Brain Connectivity Research Network is aimed at promoting research on the functional architecture of the human brain and its vulnerability to social, biological and environmental aggressors.



Collaborations and Collaborators

  • ·         Short-term memory binding: validity as a cognitive biomarker for Alzheimer's disease across cultures and nations. Cognitive markers for dementia in illiterates Peruvian Elderly.  Dr Nilton President of the Peruvian Association of Alzheimer’s Disease.
  • ·         Short-term memory binding: validity as a cognitive biomarker for Alzheimer's disease across cultures and nations. Following Trajectories of Pathological Ageing. Dr Juan Felipe Cardona Londoño, . University from Valle, Cali, Colombia.
  • ·         Eye movements and memory binding in ageing and dementia. Dr. Gerardo Fernández. Instituto de Investigaciones en Ingeniería Eléctrica "Alfredo Desages", Departamento de Ingeniería Eléctrica y de Computadoras, Universidad Nacional del Sur – CONICET.,
  • ·         Department of Basic Psychology Faculty Complutense University of Madrid. Memory and learning in Sporadic Alzheimer’s disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment. Professor Sara F Guinea.
  • ·         Neuroscience Group, University of Antioquia, Colombia. Memory and learning in familial (genetic) Alzheimer’s disease. Professor Francisco Lopera.
  • ·         Emotional processing in ex-combatants from the Colombian army conflict. University of Antioquia. Dr Natalia Trujillo and Dr Jose David Lopez.
  • ·         Cognitive markers to detect decline in preclinical AD. Dr Martin Vyhnalek and Hana Markova. Memory Disorders Clinic, Department of Neurology, Motol University Hospital, Prague
  • ·         Exploring the preclinical stages of AD. David Loewenstein, PhD, ABPP, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami
  • ·         Exploring novel cognitive tests that are associated with cognitive changes in preclinical stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA. Prof. Dorene Rentz and Dr Yakeel Quiroz
  • ·         Tacklingcultural barriers in cognitive assessment and early detection of dementias.University of São Paulo and the University of Edinburgh. Prof. Mônica Yassuda
  • ·         A default mode network approach to brain disconnection as the underlying mechanism of working memory binding deficits in preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease. Details of a Collaborator: Dr. Agustin Ibañez, Instutue for Cognitive Neurology (INECO), Buenos Aires, Argentina 
  • ·         Working memory binding and neuroimaging biomarkers in the early detection AD-related changes. Professor Yaakov Stern, Department of Neurology and Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer's Disease, Columbia University 
  • ·         Working Memory Binding Dysfunction in APOE e4 carriers. Professor Richard J. Caselli, M.D., Professor of Neurology, Clinical Core Director, Arizona Alzheimer’s Disease


To further current understanding of the brain's networks framework

My Collaboration Network

If you want to go fast, go alone.                                           
If you want to go far, go together. African proverb

Research Projects

  1. Cognitive biomarkers for Alzheimer's disease
    Working memory changes in healthy ageing
  2. Overcoming cultural barriers in the early detection of AD: towards global cognitive tests for preclinical detection
  3. Neuroimaging and cognition (fMRI, DTI and ERPs)
  4. Brain network models for the preclinical detection of neurodegenerative pathology
  5. Biological underpinnings of violent behaviors in populations chronically exposed to political conflicts
  6. Integral models to predict successful social reintegration post war conflict