Christine Fennema-Notestine, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Radiology
Phone #: (858) 246-0605


Dr. Fennema-Notestine is a cognitive neuroscientist with expertise in neuroimaging methods development and validation, clinical research neuroimaging, cognitive neuropsychology, and biomedical informatics.  She received her B.S. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her Ph.D. in Cognitive Science and Psychology from UCSD, supported by graduate fellowships from the National Science Foundation and McDonnell-Pew Center for Cognitive Neuroscience.  Her post-doctoral work emphasized clinical applications and methods development of structural and functional neuroimaging techniques.  Dr. Fennema-Notestine’s subsequent roles in national, multi-site initiatives, including the Biomedical Informatics Research Network (BIRN), led to critical methods evaluations and improved infrastructure for multi-site neuroimaging.  She also served as the Director of the BIRN Data Repository and continues to play a role in national initiatives that enable data sharing and integration. Currently, Dr. Fennema-Notestine directs methods development, validation, and multi-site studies in support of the neuroimaging characterization of HIV neuropathogenesis and other disorders through NIH funded initiatives.

Research Focus
Dr. Fennema-Notestine’s research emphasizes development and validation of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) methods and the clinical application of these methods to neurodegenerative and psychiatric populations, including normal aging, Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), and HIV.  Currently, she is directing studies to examine statistical procedures that may improve performance of existing image analysis methods and explorations of modeling approaches to better integrate information across multiple modalities.  Her work also includes enabling multi-site clinical neuroimaging initiatives to increase the power to detect subtle effects and to evaluate the potential of MRI biomarkers in monitoring disease progression and treatment efficacy.  Dr. Fennema-Notestine’s work aims to provide a more sensitive characterization of underlying neuropathogenesis and to better understand the relationship between neuroimaging biomarkers and cognitive, psychiatric, and neuromedical profiles. 

Clinical Focus 
The end goal for such neuroimaging research, including support for multi-site initiatives and pooling of shared data, is to guide the development of biomarkers for establishing diagnosis and monitoring treatment efficacy, through better descriptions of disease-related brain abnormalities and their relationship to medical variables, cognition, and treatment regimens.

Selected Publications 

  • Fennema-Notestine C, Hagler DJ, Jr., McEvoy LK, Fleisher AS, Wu EH, Karow DS, & Dale AM. (2009). Structural MRI biomarkers for preclinical and mild Alzheimer's disease. Hum Brain Mapp, 30(10), 3238-3253.
  • Fennema-Notestine C. (2009). Enabling public data sharing:  Encouraging scientific discovery and education. In V Astakhov (Ed.), Biomedical Informatics (Vol. 569). New Jersey: Humana Press, Inc.
  • Fennema-Notestine, C., Gamst, A. C., Quinn, B. T., Pacheco, J., Jernigan, T. L., Thal, L., Buckner, R., Killiany, R., Blacker, D., Dale, A. M., Fischl, B., Dickerson, B., & Gollub, R. L. (2007). Feasibility of multi-site clinical structural neuroimaging studies of aging using legacy data. Neuroinformatics, 5(4), 235-245.
  • Fennema-Notestine, C., Ozyurt, I. B., Clark, C. P., Morris, S., Bischoff-Grethe, A., Bondi, M. W., Jernigan, T. L., Fischl, B., Segonne, F., Shattuck, D. W., Leahy, R. M., Rex, D. E., Toga, A. W., Zou, K. H., & Brown, G. G. (2006). Quantitative evaluation of automated skull-stripping methods applied to contemporary and legacy images: Effects of diagnosis, bias correction, and slice location. Hum Brain Mapp, 27(2), 99-113.
  • Fennema-Notestine, C, Archibald, SL, Jacobson, MW, Corey-Bloom, J, Paulsen, JS, Peavy, GM, Gamst, A, Hamilton, JM, Salmon, DP, and Jernigan, TL.  (2004).  In vivo evidence of cerebellar atrophy and cerebral white matter loss in Huntington’s disease.  Neurology, 63(6), 989-995. 

University of California, San Diego, Department of Psychiatry, 9500 Gilman Drive, Mail Code 0603 La Jolla, CA 92037-0603
Telephone: (858) 534-3684, Fax: (858) 534-7653, Electronic Mail: