Dr Nikolina Skandali MD MSc PhD FRSA


I am interested in studying decision making process and the underlying neural mechanisms. I recently completed by PhD in how serotonin affects a broad range of cognitive functions including response inhibition, reinforcement learning and emotional processing under the supervision of Professors Barbara Sahakian and Trevor Robbins.

I am currently a core trainee in psychiatry in Fulbourn hospital and an academic clinical fellow with the department of psychiatry. I am using a variety of techniques including pharmacological tools, cognitive testing and computational modelling.

Research Focus







Clinical conditions

Anxiety disorders


Behavioural analysis

Computational modelling

Neuropsychological testing



Trevor Robbins

Barbara Sahakian

Valerie Voon

Associated News Items

    Key publications

    Skandali N, Rowe JB, Voon V, Deakin JB, Cardinal RN, Cormack F, Passamonti L, Bevan-Jones WR, Regenthal R, Chamberlain SR, Robbins TW, Sahakian BJ (2018), “Dissociable effects of acute SSRI (escitalopram) on executive, learning and emotional functions in healthy humans” Neuropsychopharmacology 43(13): 2645-2651

    Robb B Rutledge, Michael Moutoussis, Peter Smittenaar, Peter Zeidman, Tanja Taylor, Louise Hrynkiewicz, Jordan Lam, Nikolina Skandali, Jenifer Z Siegel, Olga T Ousdal, Gita Prabhu, Peter Dayan, Peter Fonagy, Raymond J Dolan (2017), “Association of neural and emotional impacts of reward prediction errors with major depression” JAMA psychiatry 74(8);790-797

    Frank Ryan, Nikolina Skandali (2016), “Reward Processing in Motivational and Affective Disorders” Frontiers in psychology 7; 1288

    Skandali N (2016), “Self reported wellbeing: the role of neuroscience research” BMJ 354; i4969

    Rutledge RB, Skandali N, Dayan P, Dolan RJ (2015), “Dopaminergic Modulation of Decision Making and Subjective Well-Being” J Neurosci 35(27): 9811-9822

    Rutledge RB, Skandali N, Dayan P, Dolan RJ (2014), “A computational and neural model of momentary subjective well-being.” Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 111(33):12252-7 Details



    Bimpis A, Papalois A, Tsakiris S, Kalafatakis K, Zarros A, Gkanti V, Skandali N, Al-Humadi H, Kouzelis C, Liapi C (2013), “Modulation of crucial adenosinetriphosphatase activities due to U-74389G administration in a porcine model of intracerebral hemorrhage.” Metab Brain Dis 28(3):439-46 Details

    Zarros A, Liapi C, Al-Humadi H, Almpani M, Stolakis V, Skandali N, Voumvourakis K, Katsouni E, Tsakiris S (2013), “Experimentally-induced Wernicke's encephalopathy modifies crucial rat brain parameters: the importance of Na+, K+ -ATPase and a potentially neuroprotective role for antioxidant supplementation.” Metab Brain Dis 28(3):387-96 Details


    Zarros A, Skandali N, Tsakiris S (2012), “Comments to the Editor concerning the cholinergic response to manganese-induced neurotoxicity, based on the paper entitled "The inhibitory effect of manganese on acetylcholinesterase activity enhances oxidative stress and neuroinflammation in the brain" by Santos et al.” Toxicology 298(1-3):59-60; author reply 61-2 Details


    Katsouni E, Sakkas P, Zarros A, Skandali N, Liapi C (2009), “The involvement of substance P in the induction of aggressive behavior.” Peptides 30(8):1586-91 Details

    Liapi C, Zarros A, Theocharis S, Al-Humadi H, Anifantaki F, Gkrouzman E, Mellios Z, Skandali N, Tsakiris S (2009), “The neuroprotective role of L-cysteine towards the effects of short-term exposure to lanthanum on the adult rat brain antioxidant status and the activities of acetylcholinesterase, (Na+,K+)- and Mg2+-ATPase.” Biometals 22(2):329-35 Details


    Zarros A, Theocharis S, Skandali N, Tsakiris S (2008), “Effects of fulminant hepatic encephalopathy on the adult rat brain antioxidant status and the activities of acetylcholinesterase, (Na(+),K (+))- and Mg (2+)-ATPase: comparison of the enzymes' response to in vitro treatment with ammonia.” Metab Brain Dis 23(3):255-64 Details