Marco Sandrini

Research activity per year

Personal profile


Marco Sandrini joined the Department of Psychology as Lecturer in September 2015.

During his PhD in Neuroscience (2003-2006) at the University of Verona (Italy, supervisor Prof. Carlo Miniussi) he investigated the role of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in working memory and episodic memory using TMS in healthy humans. His research training continued as a post-doctoral research fellow at CiMeC (2007-2009), University of Trento (Italy) working on the role of fronto-parietal network in working memory. At the National Institutes of Health (NIH, USA), as a research fellow (supervisor Dr. Leonardo Cohen) (2010-2015), he worked on memory reconsolidation, a time-limited state of plasticity during which existing memories can be modified (i.e., strengthened or weakened/disrupted). 




Research interests

His main research goal is to determine the brain mechanisms mediating human memory in young and older adults.

He seeks to understand what happens in the brain when we maintain and manipulate information in the mind for a short period of time, with a specific focus on understanding when a memory is formed, when a fragile short-term memory is consolidated into a long-term memory, and when the reactivated existing memory is reconsolidated.

In addition, in the last 5/6 years his research goal was to determine the optimal timing of noninvasive brain stimulation to induce long-lasting beneficial effects on episodic memory.

His long-term research goal is to develop effective interventions aimed at reducing memory decline in individuals at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease

Other interests:To determine the brain mechanisms of response inhibition in healthy subjects and patients with Traumatic Brain Injury using fMRI or noninvasive brain stimulation combined with fMRI. 

Techniques: Noninvasive brain stimulation (TMS, tDCS) alone or combined with fMRI (offline and online).

Non-invasive brain stimulation combined with neuroimaging can be used to study the consequences of functional interactions between the stimulated region and other parts of the network. This may lead beyond strictly modular views of brain function, that emphasize functional properties of single brain areas, towards new perspectives on how functional interactions between remote but interconnected brain regions may support cognition.



Since Alzheimer’s disease produces tremendous chronic burdens on individuals, families and health care systems around the world, the development of disease-modifying treatments (DMTs) to prevent or delay AD is an urgent international priority. His studies suggest that noninvasive brain stimulation with transcranial direct current (tDCS) can enhance long-term memory in healthy older adults and in individuals at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease (i.e., Subjective Memory Complaints and Mild Cognitive Impairment) (Sandrini et al., 2013, 2014, 2016, 2019; Manenti et al., 2015, 2017, 2018) (for opinion and review articles see Sandrini et al., 2018, 2020).

His multimodal, state-of-the-art approach is also aiming to determine the mechanisms of action of these noninvasive brain stimulation techniques (Venkatakrishnan et al., 2011; Hu et al, 2016; Sandrini et al., 2020; Gergely Bartl’s PhD project).  A better understanding of the brain mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects of tDCS is imperative, and constitutes an important first step toward developing an effective tDCS strategy for reducing cognitive decline.


Professional affiliations

Cognitive Neuroscience Society (CNS); Society for Neuroscience; British association cognitive neuroscience (BACN)


I am the module convener for Research Methods and Statistics (year 1) and Individual Differences and Psycometrics (year 2). I contribute lectures to Mind, Body and Brain (year 2) and Psychology of Problems Solving (Year 1)


Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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