- Additional Titles:Assistant Professor, Dept of Anatomy and Neurobiology, BU School of Medicine
- Education:BS in Occupational Therapy, Boston University Sargent College, 1990
MEd in Education, Northeastern University, 1997
PhD in Anatomy and Neurobiology, Boston University School of Medicine, 2005
- Office:MED: 72 East Concord Street
Scholarly, Research, and/or Practice Interests
- Dr. Pessina received her BS in Occupational Therapy from Boston University, followed by a Master’s in Education from Northeastern University, and a PhD in Anatomy and Neurobiology from Boston University School of Medicine. She has extensive teaching experience in Anatomy at Boston University School of Medicine and at Boston University’s Sargent College of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences.
- Her thesis research focused on the effects of hormone replacement therapy on the structure and function of the female reproductive system. Currently, she is pursuing research related to the return of motor function after cortical injury in a primate model. Dr. Pessina continues clinical work in the area of upper extremity rehabilitation at Massachusetts General Hospital and her clinical research addresses functional outcomes after hand injuries.
MSOT Courses Taught
SAR OT556: Neuroscience for Occupational Therapy
In this foundation neuroscience course, the student will be presented with topics including histology of the central nervous system, gross anatomy and organization of the central nervous system, cross-sectional anatomy of the brainstem and spinal cord, autonomic nervous system anatomy and function, ascending sensory pathways, descending motor pathways, cranial nerves: location, fibers course and function, vasculature of the brain, brainstem, and spinal cord, visual system, vestibular system, auditory system, cerebellum, basal ganglia, cerebral cortical structure and function, limbic system: learning and memory, and development and normal aging of the nervous system. In addition to an in depth discussion of the neuroanatomy of each of the above systems and structures, each topic will have an applied component in which students will investigate the impact of these systems and structures on function. Students will be presented with case studies in class and in the lab portion of the course which reinforce the clinical application of the course topics. In lab, students will also conduct exercises related to the testing of neurological function and investigate neuranaotmic structures using brain atlases and images. (Credits: 4)
Gross Human Anatomy prereq course (summer online)