Neuropsychology Core

About Us

Neuropsychology is the study of brain-behavior relationships. Neuropsychologists apply principles of assessment and intervention based upon the scientific study of human behavior as it relates to normal and abnormal functioning of the central nervous system. 


  • Collaboration on study design and grant proposals
  • Determining the neurodevelopmental or neuropsychological assessment battery to address research questions
  • Data collection and interpretation
  • Writing the neuropsych-related portions of posters and manuscripts

This Core participates in the CHLA Core Pilot Program. To learn more click here.

CHLA welcomes external investigators to utilize our research Core facilities. Please contact Sharon O’Neil, PhD at

Please review the general Core Use Policy.

Age of Research Participants: 3 months to 60 years

Only CHLA patients who are enrolled in a research study will be scheduled. Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate individual clinical/diagnostic evaluations and cannot provide referrals.

Neurodevelopmental Evaluations: Assessing Cognition, Receptive and Expressive Language, Fine and Gross Motor Skills, Social Skills and Adaptive Functioning.

Neuropsychological Evaluations: Assessing Attention, Working Memory, Processing Speed, Language, Fine and Gross Motor Skills, Visuo-constructional Skills, Verbal and Nonverbal Learning and Memory, Executive Functions, Intellectual Functioning, and Social, Emotional, Behavioral, and Adaptive functioning.

Researchers may contact Dr. O’Neil at:



This facility utilizes CoreConnect, a web-based core management system that supports the centralization of services and equipment scheduling, billing and usage tracking. Use of the new system is required for all core users, core leaders and core staff.

Learn more about CoreConnect

Fee Structure

The following internal prices are for Principal Investigators at CHLA and USC; rates are subject to change in the future.

Complimentary Services

Service/Category Eligibility

Initial Consultation: Up to 1 hour

After 1 hour, the fee is $200/hr.

Subsidized for any project based at CHLA

Extramural Grant Planning

Up to 3 hours/year for private foundation grants

  • After 3 hours, the fee is $200/hr.

Up to 5 hours/year for all federal grants

  • After 5 hours, the fee is $200/hr.
Researchers who are preparing a grant for submission within 6 months. This includes consultation and written text related to neuropsychological aspects of study design.

*Maximum is 15 hours of complimentary consultation (for all projects combined) per fiscal year

Service Rate
Fee for Service $200/hr
Percent FTE There is an option to purchase Core services for on-going projects, center, or institute via percent effort support (minimum of 10%) of Dr. O’Neil’s time instead of an hourly recharge.

*The Percent FTE model does not apply to Core pilot projects.

Core Reagent Inventory

Select Cores offer reagents as part of their purchasable services to the CHLA research community. A searchable Core Reagent Inventory was created in support of the CHLA research community BenchResearchHelp initiative that connects researchers with reagents when in need of a small amount of a reagent, such as an antibody, to determine the efficacy in a particular experiment.

CHLA based investigators are welcomed to browse the Cores Reagent Inventory to access the complete product list for pricing and availability. The database will be updated on an annual basis. Contact the Core for more information.

Learn More

Core Acknowledgment in Publications

How to cite the Core in publications:

Neuropsychological services were performed by the Neuropsychology Core at The Saban Research Institute, Children's Hospital Los Angeles.

Publications made possible by Core Support:

Brain biomarkers and neuropsychological outcomes of pediatric posterior fossa brain tumor survivors treated with surgical resection with or without adjuvant chemotherapy.
Baron Nelson MC, O'Neil SH, Tanedo J, Dhanani S, Malvar J, Nuñez C, Nelson MD Jr, Tamrazi B, Finlay JL, Rajagopalan V, Lepore N. B Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2021 Feb;68(2):e28817. doi: 10.1002/pbc.28817. Epub 2020 Nov 29. PMID: 33251768; PMCID: PMC7755691.

Tract-specific analysis and neurocognitive functioning in sickle cell patients without history of overt stroke.
Chai Y, Ji C, Coloigner J, Choi S, Balderrama M, Vu C, Tamrazi B, Coates T, Wood JC, O'Neil SH*, Lepore N*. Brain Behav. 2021 Jan 12:e01978. doi: 10.1002/brb3.1978. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33434353.

Excellent Outcome of Young Children with Nodular Desmoplastic Medulloblastoma Treated on "Head Start" III: A Multi-Institutional, Prospective Clinical Trial
Dhall G, O'Neil SH, Ji L, et al. [published online ahead of print, 2020 Apr 18]. Neuro Oncol. 2020;noaa102. doi:10.1093/neuonc/noaa102

Neuropsychological outcomes on Head Start III: a prospective, multi-institutional clinical trial for young children diagnosed with malignant brain tumors
Sharon H. O’Neil, Ashley M. Whitaker, Kimberly Kayser, Mary Baron Nelson, Jonathan L. Finlay, Girish Dhall, Stephen Sands
Neuro-Oncology Practice, npz071,
Published: 03 February 2020

Maturation of Brain Microstructure and Metabolism Associates with Increased Capacity for Self-Regulation during the Transition from Childhood to Adolescence.
Baron Nelson M, O'Neil SH, Wisnowski JL, Hart D, Sawardekar S, Rauh V, Perera F, Andrews HF, Hoepner LA, Garcia W, Algermissen M, Bansal R, Peterson BS. J Neurosci. 2019 Oct 16; 39(42):8362-8375. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2422-18.2019. Epub 2019 Aug 23.
PMID: 31444243

Anemia predicts lower white matter volume and cognitive performance in sickle and non-sickle cell anemia syndrome.
Choi S, O'Neil SH, Joshi AA, Li J, Bush AM, Coates TD, Leahy RM, Wood JC. Am J Hematol. 2019 Oct;94(10):1055-1065. doi: 10.1002/ajh.25570. Epub 2019 Jul 23.
PMID: 31259431

Contrasting resting-state fMRI abnormalities from sickle and non-sickle anemia.
Coloigner J, Kim Y, Bush A, Choi S, Balderrama MC, Coates TD, O'Neil SH, Lepore N, Wood JC. PLoS One. 2017 Oct 5;12(10):e0184860. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0184860. eCollection 2017.
PMID: 28981541 

Multivariate surface-based analysis of corpus callosum in patients with sickle cell disease.
Chai Y, Lao Y, Li Y, Ji C, O'Neil S, Wang Y, Lepore N, Wood J. Proc SPIE Int Soc Opt Eng. 2016 Dec;10160. pii: 101600A. doi: 10.1117/12.2257399. Epub 2017 Jan 26.
PMID: 31178616 

Clinical Factors Associated with Cerebral Metabolism in Term Neonates with Congenital Heart Disease.
Harbison AL, Votava-Smith JK, Del Castillo S, Kumar SR, Lee V, Schmithorst V, Lai HA, O'Neil S, Bluml S, Paquette L, Panigrahy A. J Pediatr. 2017 Apr;183:67-73.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2016.12.061. Epub 2017 Jan 19.
PMID: 28109537 

Randomized placebo-controlled study of lovastatin in children with neurofibromatosis type 1.
Payne JM, Barton B, Ullrich NJ, Cantor A, Hearps SJ, Cutter G, Rosser T, Walsh KS, Gioia GA, Wolters PL, Tonsgard J, Schorry E, Viskochil D, Klesse L, Fisher M, Gutmann DH, Silva AJ, Hunter SJ, Rey-Casserly C, Cantor NL, Byars AW, Stavinoha PL, Ackerson JD, Armstrong CL, Isenberg J, O'Neil SH, Packer RJ, Korf B, Acosta MT, North KN; NF Clinical Trials Consortium. Neurology. 2016 Dec 13;87(24):2575-2584. Epub 2016 Nov 9.
PMID: 27956565 

Effect of Sensorineural Hearing Loss on Neurocognitive Functioning in Pediatric Brain Tumor Survivors.
Orgel E, O'Neil SH, Kayser K, Smith B, Softley TL, Sherman-Bien S, Counts PA, Murphy D, Dhall G, Freyer DR. Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2016 Mar;63(3):527-34. doi: 10.1002/pbc.25804. Epub 2015 Nov 3.
PMID: 26529035