Dr. Chai is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery at McGill University, and a Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience.
Dr. Chai received her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of California, Berkeley and a Master’s degree in Computer Science at Stanford University. She completed her postdoctoral training at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
The long-term goal of Dr. Chai’s research program is to understand the relation between brain organization and cognitive development. Her work examines how large-scale brain networks support learning, memory and language.
Dr. Chai is particularly interested in the neural developmental processes underlying these cognitive functions from children to adults, and how experience and disease can alter brain organization. Her research methodology includes behavioural, brain imaging (fMRI, resting-state fMRI, DTI) and computational approaches.
Her research is funded by Healthy Brains, Healthy Lives (HBHL).
Hirshfeld-Becker D, Gabrieli J, Shapero BG, Biederman J, Whitfield-Gabrieli S, Chai XJ. Intrinsic functional brain connectivity predicts onset of major depression disorder in adolescence. Brain Connectivity. 9, 5, 388-398 (2019)
Gagan J, Anteraper SA, Chai XJ, Patil KR, Saygin ZM, Semwal M, Goldin RL, Furtak SL, Gabrieli JDE, Biederman J, Whitfield-Gabrieli S. Integration and segregation of default mode network resting-state functional connectivity in transition-age males with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder. Brain Connectivity, 7: 558-573 (2017).
Chai XJ, Berken J, Barbeau EB, Soles J, Callahan M, Chen JK, Klein D. Intrinsic functional connectivity in the adult brain and success in second language learning. Journal of Neuroscience 36: 755-761 (2016).
Berken J, Chai XJ, Chen JK, Gracco V, Klein D. Effects of early and late bilingualism on resting-state functional connectivity. Journal of Neuroscience 36: 1165-1172 (2016).
Chai XJ, Ofen N, Gabrieli JDE, Whitfield-Gabrieli S. Development of deactivation of the default-mode network during episodic memory formation. NeuroImage 84: 932-938 (2014).
Chai XJ, Ofen N, Gabrieli JDE, Whitfield-Gabrieli S. Selective development of anticorrelated networks in the intrinsic functional organization of the human brain. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 26: 501-513 (2014).
Ofen N, Chai XJ, Schuil K, Whitfield-Gabrieli S, Gabrieli JDE. The development of brain systems associated with successful memory retrieval of scenes. Journal of Neuroscience 32: 10012-10020 (2012).