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TC's Malandraki Wins Early Career Research Award


Georgia Malandraki

Georgia Malandraki

Georgia Malandraki, Assistant Professor in the Program of Speech and Language Pathology in TC’s Department of Biobehavioral Sciences, has received the 2011 Early Career Contributions in Research Award of the American Speech Language and Hearing Association (ASHA).Malandraki will be formally recognized at the ASHA Convention in San Diego on November 18th.

ASHA is the professional, scientific, and credentialing association for more than 145,000 members and affiliates who are audiologists, speech-language pathologists, and speech, language, and hearing scientists.
ASHA’s prestigious Early Career Research Award acknowledges significant scientific accomplishments by individuals, beyond their dissertation, within five years of receiving their doctoral or other terminal degree. It is presented to one or two individuals each year across all areas of speech and language pathology.

As a researcher and a certified Speech and Language Pathologist, Malandraki works to unravel the mysteries of human brain recovery and plasticity as it relates to swallowing function. Her work is aimed at helping to improve swallowing ability and quality of life for stroke victims, those with head or neck cancer, or neuro-degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s Disease

A recent addition to TC’s faculty, Malandraki earned her doctorate in Speech and Hearing Science with a focus in Swallowing Disorders and Neuroscience at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the Department of Medicine of the University of Wisconsin, Madison. While a doctoral student she was also awarded the First Prize of the New Investigator Grant Awards for 2008 of the Dysphagia Research Society, for her doctoral work.

Malandraki’s research uses advanced neuro-imaging (functional magnetic resonance imaging, or fMRI, and diffusion tensor imaging, or DTI) to understand the neural underpinnings of swallowing components in the normal population and following trauma or intervention. She also has done research aimed at improving diagnostic methods for identifying patients with swallowing problems.

In March 2010, she was awarded a grant from the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, sponsored by the National Institute of Aging, to study the effectiveness of sensory stimulation on swallowing physiology and neural activation in healthy older adults and patients with mild Alzheimer's Disease. This study is ongoing.

Malandraki is the Director of the new Swallowing, Voice and Neuroimaging Laboratory of the Department, where she continues to pursue both lines of research. She is currently collaborating with the fMRI Center and the Otolaryngology Department of the Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, as well as with the Edward D. Mysak Clinic for Communication Disorders at TC, for her research.

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