Lab Director

Natalie C. Ebner, PhD


Curriculum Vitae

Natalie C. Ebner is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at University of Florida since Fall 2011. She received her Ph.D. in 2005 in Psychology with a particular focus on lifespan development and aging from the Free University of Berlin in Germany. She completed post-doctoral fellowships at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin, Germany, and at Yale University, where she worked as Associate Research Scientist before joining the faculty at University of Florida. Dr. Ebner’s research background is in lifespan development and cognitive and socio-emotional aging. Her research adopts an aging perspective on emotion, motivation, and social cognition and thus is at the intersection of developmental, social, and cognitive psychology. In particular, her research program focuses on examining the extent to which emotional (e.g., faces displaying different emotion expressions, positive and negative personality traits) and self-relevant information (e.g., related to one’s own age, personal goals and agendas, age stereotypes) affect attention, decision making, and memory, how these effects change across the adult lifespan, and what the consequences are for emotion regulation, health, and well-being. She conducts experimental research using a multi-methods approach that combines convergent measures, including self-report, behavior observation, eye tracking, genetics, hormonal markers, and functional neuroimaging techniques, with the aim to integrate introspective, behavioral, and neurobiological data. Some of her recent work is interventional with a specific orientation towards improvement of emotional, motivational, and social functioning in aging such as via medicinal products (e.g., oxytocin administration) as well as neurofeedback training.

Google Scholar | PubMed

Post Doctoral Researcher


Tian Lin, PhD


Curriculum Vitae

Tian Lin’s primary research interest is in cognitive aging. In particular, he is intrigued by how emotional and motivational factors influence cognition across the adulthood. Recently, he plans to investigate how the perception of unfamiliar others in term of trustworthiness changes in adulthood and how the impression on trustworthiness affects memory in young and older adults.

Graduate Students

Marilyn Horta, MS


Graduate Research Assistant

Curriculum Vitae

Marilyn’s research focuses on emotion processing, decision-making, and prosociality in aging. She is also interested in testing interventions that may optimize socioemotional functioning in late life, such as intranasal oxytocin (OT). Marilyn’s Masters research focused on the effects of OT and age on functional connectivity during dynamic emotion identification. Her dissertation work will examine the effects of OT administered across a 4-week period on functional connectivity during a theory-of-mind task among older adults. Moving forward, Marilyn plans to use neuroimaging to study prosocial decision-making and the influence of emotion on difficult or complex decisions in aging, such as in the context of finances and health.

Ian Frazier, MA

Graduate Research Assistant

Curriculum Vitae


Ian Frazier’s research focuses on age-related change in social decision making, specifically on trust processes. He is also currently working on how acute and chronic nasal administration of oxytocin affects various aspects of trusting behaviors, neurobiology, and affective processing in younger and older adults. His previous work involved assessing the effects of acute, sub-intoxicating doses of alcohol on older and younger adults via spectral EEG and performance on working memory maintenance and driving simulator tasks.

Désirée Lussier, MS

Graduate Research Assistant

Curriculum Vitae


Desiree’s research interests are on structural volumetrics and connectivity between regions of the brain involved in socioemotional information processing, such as those in the basal ganglia and limbic system, using magnetic resonance and diffusion tensor imaging. She is particularly interested in age and sex differences of the structures and how variations of this are impacted by and contribute to the experience of pain and pain perception in adults. Her master’s thesis focused on age-differential effects of intranasal oxytocin on “social brain” functional connectivity in women.

Lab Alumni

Aylin Tasdemir, Ph.D

Curriculum Vitae

Carla Strickland Hughes, Ph.D


Lab Managers

Eliany Perez


Robert Rainer


Devon Weir