Instituto de Neurociencias

College of Health Sciences
About us

Neuroscientific research is a broad field that includes clinical neurology, neurophysiology, psychophysiology, and cognitive science. The research carried out by the Institute aims to answer questions related to the central nervous system, from clinical neurological care to the relationship between the brain and behavior. The research is published in peer-reviewed academic journals and presented at national and international conferences.

Related Careers
Related Postgraduate Programs
Research Interests

Cognitive Sciences, Neuropsychiatry, Neurophysiology, Psychophysiology, Neuropsychological Rehabilitation, Neuropsychology/Behavioral Neurology, Clinical Neurology

Academic staff

To promote the study of the central nervous system, as well as evidence-based practice to treat conditions involving the brain. This includes facilitating academic and clinical research in neurosciences through the scientific method and the scientific dissemination of information through publications, conferences, etc.



To create a research center, with international recognition, dedicated to the scientific and multidisciplinary study of the human central nervous system.




Dr. Nelson Maldonado
Coordinator of Medicine 
Telephone: (+593 2) 297-1700

Dr. Nergiz Turgut
Coordinator of Education
(+593 2) 297-1700 ext. 1538

Dannys Rivero Rodriguez
Coordination of Research
Telephone: (+593 2) 297-1700

Ms. María Sol Garcés
Administrative Coordination
Telephone: (+593 2) 297-1700 ext 1338

Ms. Isabela Lara
Communications Coordination
Telephone: (+593 2) 297-1700 ext. 1538
Institutional email:

USFQ Research Associates:

List of members at USFQ and their neuroscientific interests

Dr. Ana Trueba (psychophysiology)
Dra. Nergiz Turgut (clinical neuropsychology)
Ms María Sol Garcés (cognitive neuropsychiatry)
Ms Isabela Lara (psychophysiology)
Dr. Helen Johnson (cognitive neuroscience)
Dr. Michelle Grunauer (mental health/pediatrics)
Dr. Nelson Maldonado (neurocritical care)
Dra. Laura Botani (neurosurgery)
Dr. Danny Rivero (neurology)
Dra. Daniela Di Capua (epileptology)
Dr. Diego Benítez (electroencephalography and signal processing)
Dr. Carlos Loza (artificial intelligence)
Dr. Noel Pérez Pérez (computational vision)

External Associate Researchers:

Dr. Jose Suarez, Johns Hopkins University
Dr. Panos Varelas, Henry Ford Hospital, Michigan
Dr. Edgar Samaniego, University of Iowa
Dr. Santiago Ortega, University of Iowa
Dr. Christos Lazaridis, University of Chicago
Dr. Daniel Ontaneda, Cleveland Clinic Foundation
Dr. Christopher Lewandowski, Henry Ford Hospital, Michigan
Dr. Chethan Rao, Baylor College of Medicine
Dr. David Burdette, Spectrum Health
Dr. Rhonna Shatz, University of Cincinnati
Paulina Buffle, University of Geneva
Dr. Diego Jiménez-Jiménez, Institute of Neurology, University College London
Dr. Patricia Bravo, UNACH, Ecuador


Pluck, G., Bravo Mancero, P., Maldonado Gavilánez, C. E. Urquizo Alcívar, A .M., Ortíz Encalada, P. A., Tello Carrasco, E. …Trueba, A. F. (2019). Modulation of striatum based non-declarative and medial temporal lobe based declarative memory predicts academic achievement at university level. Trends in Neuroscience and Education, 14, 1-10. Doi:10.1016/j.tine.2018.11.002.

Pluck, G. & López-Águila, M. A. (2019). Induction of fear but no effects on cognitive fluency by theta frequency auditory binaural beat stimulation. Psychology & Neuroscience, 12(1), 53-64. Doi: 10.1037/pne0000166.

Samaniego, E. A., Roa, J. A., Martinez-Burbano, B., Ortega-Gutierrez, S., Hasan, D. M., Jibaja, M., … & Maldonado, N. (2019). Angiographic Features of Intracranial Aneurysms in Ecuador. Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases, 28(3), 761-767. Doi: 10.1016/j.jstrokecerebrovasdis.2018.11.020.

Alústiza, I., Garcés, M. S., Solanes, A., Goena, J., Ortuño, M., Molero, P., … & Ortuño, F. (2018). Aberrant timing and oddball detection in Schizophrenia: findings from a signed differential mapping meta-analysis. Heliyon, 4(12), e01004. Doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2018.e01004.

Pluck, G., Banda-Cruz, D. R., Andrade-Guimaraes, M. V., & Trueba, A. F. (2018). Socioeconomic deprivation and the development of neuropsychological functions: A study with “street children” in Ecuador. Child Neuropsychology, 24(4), 510-523. Doi: 10.1080/09297049.2017.1294150.

Ritz, T., Trueba, A. F., Vogel, P. D., Auchus, R. J., & Rosenfield, D. (2018). Exhaled nitric oxide and vascular endothelial growth factor as predictors of cold symptoms after stress. Biological Psychology, 132, 116-124. Doi: 10.1016/j.biopsycho.2017.11.006.

Rivero Rodríguez, D., Scherle Matamoros, C., Sam, K., Dicapua Sacoto, D., Maldonado Samaniego N., & Pernas, Y. (2018). Evaluation of STESS, mRSTESS, and EMSE to predict high disability and mortality at hospital discharge in ecuadorian patients with status epilepticus. Neurocritical Care, 29(3), 413-418. Doi:10.1007/s12028-018-0549-1.

Rivero Rodríguez, D., Scherle Matamoros, C., Pillajo Sulca, G. E., & Pernas Sánchez, Y. (2018). Isolated unilateral oculomotor palsy after mild traumatic brain injury. Neurocirugia, 29(6), 314-317. Doi: 10.1016/j.neucir.2018.05.005.

Rivero Rodríguez, D., Scherle Matamoros, C., Dicapua Sacoto, D., & Maldonado Samaniego. N. (2018). Double cortex syndrome in a male patient without lissencephaly. Neurologia. Doi: 10.1016/j.nrl.2017.12.002.

Turgut, N., Miranda, M., Kastrup, A., Eling, P., & Hildebrandt, H. (2018). tDCS combined with optokinetic drift reduces egocentric neglect in severely impaired post-acute patients. Neuropsychological Rehabilitation, 28(4), 515-526. Doi: 10.1080/09602011.2016.1202120.

Turgut, N., Möller, L., Dengler, K.,Steinberg, K., Sprenger, A., Eling, P., … & Hildebrandt, H. (2018). Adaptive cueing treatment of neglect in stroke patients leads to improvements in activities of daily living: A randomized controlled, crossover trial. Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, 32(11), 988-998. Doi: 10.1177/1545968318807054.

Loza, C. A., Okun, M. S., & Príncipe, J. C. (2017). A marked point process framework for extracellular electrical potentials. Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience, 11, 95. Doi: 10.3389/fnsys.2017.00095.

Rivero Rodríguez, D., Scherle Matamoros, C., Fernández Cúe, L., Miranda Hernández, J.L., Pernas Sánchez, Y., & Pérez Nellar, J. (2017). Factors associated with poor outcome for aneurysmal subarachnoid haemorrhage in a series of 334 patients. Neurología, 32(1), 15-21. Doi: 10.1016/j.nrleng.2014.12.016.

Turgut, N., Mödden, C., Brumund, T., Eling, P., & Hildebrandt, H. (2017). A study on the independence of egocentric and allocentric neglect. Cortex, 96, 95-104. Doi: 10.1016/j.cortex.2017.09.005.

Pluck, G., Amraoui, D., & Fornell-Villalobos, I. (in press). Brief Communication: Reliability of the D-KEFS Tower Test in samples of children and adolescents in Ecuador. Applied Neuropsychology: Child.

Scherle Matamoros, C.E. & Rivero Rodríguez, D. (2019). Cerebral hemodynamic parameters, determined by transcranial Doppler, in a group of healthy volunteers at 2,850 meters above sea level. Radiology. Doi:. Doi: 10.1016/j.rx.2019.04.003.

Rivero Rodríguez, D., Scherle Matamoros, C., & Pernas Sánchez, Y. (2018). Adie pupil. Pilocarpine test. Clinical Medicine,51, 170. Doi: 10.1016/j.medcli.2017.10.024.

Rivero Rodríguez, D., Scherle Matamoros C.E., Di Capua Sacoto, D., Jibaja Vega, M., Santacruz Villalba, M.J., Mullo Almache, E.A. … Galarza Galarza, K.A. (2018). Epileptic status. factors associated with an unfavorable evolution in a tertiary center. Ecuadorian Journal of Neurology, 27, 25-30.

 Scherle Matamoros, C.E., Suarez J.I., Samaniego, N.M. & Rivero Rodríguez, D. (2018) Neurosonología Vascular. Medellín (Colombia): Amolca.

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