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Marcela C. Otero
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Psychiatry
Bio Dr. Otero is an Advanced Postdoctoral Fellow at the Sierra Pacific Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC) at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, jointly affiliated with the Stanford University School of Medicine. Upon earning a B.A. in Psychology from Cornell University, she was awarded the NIH Post-Baccalaureate Intramural Research Training Award and completed a research fellowship in the Unit on Affective Neuroscience at the National Institute of Mental Health, where she conducted research on cognitive and affective processing in generalized anxiety disorder and social anxiety disorder. She earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Science at the University of California, Berkeley. Her graduate research, partly supported by a NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, investigated emotional reactivity and regulation in neurodegenerative disease using physiological and behavioral methodologies, and subjective self-report. Her secondary line of research examined the adverse effects of patient socioemotional deficits on caregiver mental health, and the association between positive interpersonal processes and long-term marital satisfaction. Dr. Otero’s current research interests include identifying the cognitive and affective mechanisms underlying emotion dysregulation in late-life psychopathology, particularly anxiety and depression, and the development of behavioral interventions aimed at promoting wellbeing in Veterans and their loved ones.