Maria Luisa Gorno-Tempini, MD, PhD

Professor of Neurology

Dr. Gorno-Tempini is a behavioral neurologist with a PhD degree in imaging neuroscience and currently directs the Language Laboratory at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center (MAC). She obtained her medical degree and clinical specialty training in neurology in Italy. Dr. Gorno-Tempini’s main focus was in behavioral neurology, particularly the neural basis of higher cognitive functions such as language and memory. To pursue this research she worked for three years at the Function Imaging Laboratory, University College London, where she obtained her PhD degree in imaging neuroscience. She was part of the language group, and her thesis work consisted of several positron emission tomography (PET) and functional MRI studies investigating the neural basis of face and proper name processing. In 2001, Dr. Gorno-Tempini began her work at the MAC as a fellow and has since become a full professor. For the last 12 years she has applied her expertise in cognitive neurology and neuroimaging to the study of neurodegenerative disease, in particular primary progressive aphasia (PPA) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). She has extensive experience in neurology and neuroscience and in the use of behavioral and neuroimaging paradigms to study language symptoms and their neural mechanisms.

Dr. Gorno-Tempini also has experience in mentoring residents, pre-doctoral and post-doctoral fellows, and faculty-level individuals from all over the world. She is faculty in the MAC T32 program and numerous K23 applications in the neurology department, and she has taught research methodology, manuscript preparation and grant writing skills to mentees from diverse backgrounds, including speech and language pathology, clinical neurology and basic neuroscience.

Soon, the language group will have the opportunity to study the largest PPA cohort ever collected, and the multifaceted dataset will provide a unique opportunity to make groundbreaking discoveries.