Roberto Cabeza

Roberto Cabeza

Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience

External Address: 
B243f LSRC Bldg, Ctr Cognitive Neuroscience, Duke Univ, Durham, NC 27708
Internal Office Address: 
Duke Box 90999, Durham, NC 27708-0999


My laboratory investigates the neural correlates of memory and cognition in young and older adults using fMRI. We have three main lines of research: First, we distinguish the neural correlates of various episodic memory processes. For example, we have compared encoding vs. retrieval, item vs. source memory, recall vs. recognition, true vs. false memory, and emotional vs. nonemotional memory. We are particularly interested in the contribution of prefrontal cortex (PFC) and medial temporal lobe (MTL) subregions and their interactions. Second, we investigate similarities and differences between the neural correlates of episodic memory and other memory and cognitive functions (working, semantic, implicit, and procedural memory; attention; perception, etc.). The main goal of this cross-functional approach is to understand the contributions of brain regions shared by different cognitive functions. Finally, in both episodic memory and cross-function studies, we also examine the effects of healthy and pathological aging. Regarding episodic memory, we have linked processes differentially affected by aging (e.g., item vs. source memory, recall vs. recognition) to the effects of aging on specific PFC and MTL subregions. Regarding cross-function comparisons, we identify age-related changes in activity that are common to various functions. For example, we have found an age-related increase in bilaterality that occurs for many functions (memory, attention, language, perception, and motor) and is associated with functional compensation.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., University of Tsukuba (Japan) 1994

Selected Grants

Elucidating mechanisms underlying fluctuations of sustained attention and their influence on memory awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2020 to 2023

Effects of Aging on Episodic Memory-Dependent Decision Making awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2018 to 2023

Neuro-inflammation in Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction: CSF and fMRI Studies awarded by National Institutes of Health (Advisor). 2017 to 2022

Impact of Timing, Targeting, and Brain State on rTMS of Human and Non-Human Primates awarded by National Institutes of Health (Co Investigator). 2017 to 2021

Training Autobiographical Memory Retrieval in Healthy Older Adults Using Novel Lifelogging Technology awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2018 to 2021

Using fMRI-guided TMS to increase central executive function in older adults awarded by National Institutes of Health (Co-Principal Investigator). 2015 to 2021

Behavior and Physiology in Aging awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 2015 to 2020

Memory Representations in Aging awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2018 to 2020

Collaboratory on Research Definitions for Cognitive Reserve and Resilience awarded by The Trustees of Columbia University (Principal Investigator). 2018 to 2020


Cabeza, R., et al. Principles of Cognitive Neuroscience. Sinauer Associates Incorporated, 2012.

Cabeza, R., et al. Cognitive Neuroscience of Aging: Linking cognitive and cerebral aging. 2009, pp. 1–408. Scopus, doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195156744.001.0001. Full Text

Cabeza, R., and A. Kingstone. Handbook of Functional Neuroimaging of Congnition. 2006.

Doshi, A., et al. “Geriatric anesthesia: Age-dependent changes in the central and peripheral nervous systems.” Geriatric Anesthesiology: Third Edition, 2017, pp. 145–60. Scopus, doi:10.1007/978-3-319-66878-9_10. Full Text

Wang, W. C., et al. “Episodic Memory Decline and Healthy Aging.” Learning and Memory: A Comprehensive Reference, 2017, pp. 475–97. Scopus, doi:10.1016/B978-0-12-809324-5.21093-6. Full Text

Jacques, P. L., and R. Cabeza. “Neural Basis of Autobiographical Memory.” Origins and Development of Recollection: Perspectives from Psychology and Neuroscience, 2012. Scopus, doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195340792.003.0008. Full Text

Cabeza, R. “Prefrontal and medial temporal lobe contributions to relational memory in young and older adults.” Handbook of Binding and Memory: Perspectives from Cognitive Neuroscience, 2012. Scopus, doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198529675.003.0024. Full Text

Cabeza, R. “Commentary: Neuroscience frontiers of cognitive aging: Approaches to cognitive neuroscience of aging.” New Frontiers in Cognitive Aging, 2012. Scopus, doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198525691.003.0009. Full Text

Villanueva, A., et al. “Gaze estimation.” Gaze Interaction and Applications of Eye Tracking: Advances in Assistive Technologies, 2011, pp. 310–25. Scopus, doi:10.4018/978-1-61350-098-9.ch021. Full Text

Daselaar, S., and R. Cabeza. “Age-related changes in hemispheric organization.” Cognitive Neuroscience of Aging: Linking Cognitive and Cerebral Aging, 2009. Scopus, doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195156744.003.0014. Full Text

Cabeza, R., et al. “Cognitive Neuroscience of Aging: Emergence of a New Discipline.” Cognitive Neuroscience of Aging: Linking Cognitive and Cerebral Aging, 2009. Scopus, doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195156744.003.0001. Full Text

Dolcos, F., et al. “The Memory Enhancing Effect of Emotion: Functional Neuroimaging Evidence.” Memory and Emotion: Interdisciplinary Perspectives, 2008, pp. 105–34. Scopus, doi:10.1002/9780470756232.ch6. Full Text

Crowell, C. A., et al. “Older adults benefit from more widespread brain network integration during working memory.Neuroimage, vol. 218, Sept. 2020, p. 116959. Pubmed, doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2020.116959. Full Text Open Access Copy

Beynel, Lysianne, et al. “Structural Controllability Predicts Functional Patterns and Brain Stimulation Benefits Associated with Working Memory.J Neurosci, vol. 40, no. 35, Aug. 2020, pp. 6770–78. Pubmed, doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0531-20.2020. Full Text

Gamboa Arana, Olga Lucia, et al. “Intensity- and timing-dependent modulation of motion perception with transcranial magnetic stimulation of visual cortex.Neuropsychologia, vol. 147, Aug. 2020, p. 107581. Pubmed, doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2020.107581. Full Text

Deng, Lifu, et al. “Age-Related Compensatory Reconfiguration of PFC Connections during Episodic Memory Retrieval.Cerebral Cortex (New York, N.Y. : 1991), July 2020. Epmc, doi:10.1093/cercor/bhaa192. Full Text

Gamboa, Olga Lucia, et al. “Application of long-interval paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation to motion-sensitive visual cortex does not lead to changes in motion discrimination.Neurosci Lett, vol. 730, June 2020, p. 135022. Pubmed, doi:10.1016/j.neulet.2020.135022. Full Text Open Access Copy

Cabeza, Roberto, et al. “Are the hippocampus and its network necessary for creativity?Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 117, no. 25, June 2020, pp. 13870–72. Epmc, doi:10.1073/pnas.2008601117. Full Text

Beynel, Lysianne, et al. “Site-Specific Effects of Online rTMS during a Working Memory Task in Healthy Older Adults.Brain Sci, vol. 10, no. 5, Apr. 2020. Pubmed, doi:10.3390/brainsci10050255. Full Text Open Access Copy

Wing, Erik A., et al. “Cortical Overlap and Cortical-Hippocampal Interactions Predict Subsequent True and False Memory.J Neurosci, vol. 40, no. 9, Feb. 2020, pp. 1920–30. Pubmed, doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1766-19.2020. Full Text

Stanley, Matthew L., et al. “The centrality of remembered moral and immoral actions in constructing personal identity.Memory (Hove, England), vol. 28, no. 2, Feb. 2020, pp. 278–84. Epmc, doi:10.1080/09658211.2019.1708952. Full Text

Beynel, Lysianne, et al. “Effects of online repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) on cognitive processing: A meta-analysis and recommendations for future studies.Neurosci Biobehav Rev, vol. 107, Dec. 2019, pp. 47–58. Pubmed, doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2019.08.018. Full Text Open Access Copy


Beynel, Lysianne, et al. “Online Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Enhances Working Memory Performance in Younger and Older Adults.” Neuropsychopharmacology, vol. 43, NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2018, pp. S78–S78.

Martinikorena, I., et al. “Introducing I2head database.” Proceedings  Petmei 2018: Pervasive Eye Tracking and Mobile Eye Based Interaction, 2018. Scopus, doi:10.1145/3208031.3208033. Full Text

Larumbe, A., et al. “Supervised Descent Method (SDM) applied to accurate pupil detection in off-the-shelf eye tracking systems.” Eye Tracking Research and Applications Symposium (Etra), 2018. Scopus, doi:10.1145/3204493.3204551. Full Text

Beynel, Lysianne, et al. “fMRI- and Computationally-Guided rTMS Enhances Performance in Working Memory Manipulation.” Neuropsychopharmacology, vol. 42, NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2017, pp. S114–15.

Sesma-Sanchez, L., et al. “Design issues of remote eye tracking systems with large range of movement.” Eye Tracking Research and Applications Symposium (Etra), 2014, pp. 243–46. Scopus, doi:10.1145/2578153.2578193. Full Text

Brooks, Jeffrey, et al. “NEURAL CORRELATES OF THE OWN-AGE BIAS IN YOUNGER AND OLDER ADULTS.” Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, MIT PRESS, 2013, pp. 35–35.

Iyengar, Vijeth, et al. “REMEMBERING OTHER PEOPLE'S POLITICAL VIEWS: AN FMRI STUDY OF EMOTIONAL SOURCE MEMORY ENCODING.” Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, MIT PRESS, 2013, pp. 112–112.


Dew, Ilana, and Roberto Cabeza. “EFFECTS OF FLUENCY ON RECOGNITION MEMORY DECISIONS IN YOUNG AND OLDER ADULTS: AN FMRI STUDY.” Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, MIT PRESS, 2013, pp. 167–167.