Dr Elisabetta Versace

Elisabetta Versace

Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor)

School of Biological and Behavioural Sciences
Queen Mary University of London
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animal cognition, predispositions, experimental evolution, early cognition, crossmodality, dance science - positive psychology


Relevant PublicationPublications of specific relevance to the Centre for Brain and Behaviour


Relevant PublicationVersace E, Bliss L, Vasas V, Freeland L, Roach R and Ferrè E (2023). A spontaneous gravity prior: Newborn chicks prefer stimuli that move against gravity. Biology Letters, The Royal Society 


Relevant PublicationVersace E, Gallo V, Xin Z, Abdallah D, Angioi M, Redding E, Ackroyd B and Galvan C (2022). MotionPerfection: An agile tool for the visualisation, analysis, annotation, and record of motor practice. SoftwareX, Elsevier 
Relevant PublicationWang C, Benetos E, Versace E and Wang S (2022). Joint Scattering for Automatic Chick Call Recognition. 30th European Signal Processing Conference Belgrade, Serbia 29 Aug 2022 - 2 Sep 2022
Relevant PublicationVersace E, Sgadò P, George J, Loveland JL, Ward J, Thorpe P, Jensen LJ, Spencer KA, Paracchini S and Vallortigara G (2022). Light-induced asymmetries in embryonic retinal gene expression are mediated by the vascular system and extracellular matrix. Scientific Reports, Springer Nature vol. 12 (1) 
Relevant PublicationSzabó E, Chiandetti C, Téglás E, Versace E, Csibra G, Kovács ÁM and Vallortigara G (2022). Young domestic chicks spontaneously represent the absence of objects. eLife, eLife vol. 11 
Relevant PublicationVersace E, Lonardo L and Huber L (2022). Recognition of rotated objects and cognitive offloading in dogs. iScience, Elsevier (Cell Press) 


Relevant PublicationJosserand M, Rosa-Salva O, Versace E and Lemaire BS (2021). Visual Field Analysis: A reliable method to score left and right eye use using automated tracking. Behavior Research Methods, Springer Nature vol. 54 (4), 1715-1724.  
Relevant PublicationVersace E, Ragusa M, Pallante V and Wang S (2021). Attraction for familiar conspecifics in young chicks (Gallus gallus): an interbreed study. Behavioural Processes, Elsevier 
Relevant PublicationSlonina Z, Bonzini AA, Brown J, Wang S, Farkhatdinov I, Althoefer K, Jamone L and Versace E (2021). Using RoboChick to Identify the Behavioral Features Promoting Social Interactions. 2021 IEEE International Conference on Development and Learning (ICDL)
Relevant PublicationLorenzi E, Lemaire BS, Versace E, Matsushima T and Vallortigara G (2021). Resurgence of an inborn attraction for animate objects via thyroid hormone T3. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, Frontiers Media 
Relevant PublicationLemaire BS, Rucco D, Josserand M, Vallortigara G and Versace E (2021). Stability and individual variability of social attachment in imprinting. Scientific Reports, Springer Nature vol. 11 (1) 
Relevant PublicationPallante V, Rucco D and Versace E (2021). Young chicks quickly lose their spontaneous preference to aggregate with females. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, Springer Nature vol. 75 (5) 
Relevant PublicationRosa-Salva O, Mayer U, Versace E, Hébert M, Lemaire BS and Vallortigara G (2021). Sensitive periods for social development: Interactions between predisposed and learned mechanisms. Cognition, Elsevier vol. 213 


Relevant PublicationVersace E, Damini S and Stancher G (2020). Early preference for face-like stimuli in solitary species as revealed by tortoise hatchlings. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 
Relevant PublicationVersace E, Caffini M, Werkhoven Z and de Bivort BL (2020). Individual, but not population asymmetries, are modulated by social environment and genotype in Drosophila melanogaster. Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group vol. 10 (1) 
Relevant PublicationVersace E, Schloetterer C, Hsu S-K, Jakšić AM, Nolte V, Lirakis M, Kofler R and Barghi N (2020). Rapid sex-specific adaptation to high temperature in Drosophila. eLife, eLife Sciences Publications Ltd 


Relevant PublicationVersace E, Ragusa M and Vallortigara G (2019). A transient time window for early predispositions in newborn chicks. Scientific Reports, Springer Nature vol. 9 (1) 
Relevant PublicationHebert M, Versace E and Vallortigara G (2019). Inexperienced preys know when to flee or to freeze in front of a threat. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of USA, National Academy of Sciences 
Relevant PublicationVersace E, Rogge JR, Shelton-May N and Ravignani A (2019). Positional encoding in cotton-top tamarins (Saguinus oedipus). Animal Cognition, Springer Nature vol. 22 (5), 825-838.  
Relevant PublicationLorenzi E, Pross A, Rosa-Salva O, Versace E, Sgadò P and Vallortigara G (2019). Embryonic Exposure to Valproic Acid Affects Social Predispositions for Dynamic Cues of Animate Motion in Newly-Hatched Chicks. Frontiers in Physiology, Frontiers vol. 10 


Relevant PublicationVersace E, Martinho-Truswell A, Kacelnik A and Vallortigara G (2018). Priors in Animal and Artificial Intelligence: Where Does Learning Begin? Trends in Cognitive Sciences, Elsevier vol. 22 (11), 963-965.  
Relevant Publicationrosa-salva O, Fiser J, VERSACE E, Dolci C, Chehaimi S, Santolin C and Vallortigara G (2018). Spontaneous learning of visual structures in domestic chicks. Animals, MDPI AG 
Relevant PublicationBelloni V, Galeazzi A, Bernini G, Mandrioli M, Versace E and Haase A (2018). Corrigendum to “Evolutionary compromises to metabolic toxins: Ammonia and urea tolerance in Drosophila suzukii and Drosophila melanogaster” [Physiol. Behav. 191, 1 July 2018, 146–154]. Physiology & Behavior, Elsevier vol. 194 
Relevant PublicationBelloni V, Galeazzi A, Bernini G, Mandrioli M, Versace E and Haase A (2018). Evolutionary compromises to metabolic toxins: Ammonia and urea tolerance in Drosophila suzukii and Drosophila melanogaster. Physiology & Behavior, Elsevier vol. 191, 146-154.  
Relevant PublicationSgadò P, Rosa-Salva O, VERSACE E and Vallortigara G (2018). Embryonic Exposure to Valproic Acid Impairs Social Predispositions of Newly-Hatched Chicks. Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group 
Relevant PublicationVERSACE E, Damini S, Caffini M and Stancher G (2018). Born to be asocial: Newly-hatched tortoises avoid unfamiliar individuals. Animal Behaviour, Elsevier Masson 
Relevant PublicationVallortigara G and Versace E (2018). Filial Imprinting. Encyclopedia of Animal Cognition and Behavior  1-4.  


Relevant PublicationVersace E, Spierings MJ, Caffini M, ten Cate C and Vallortigara G (2017). Spontaneous generalization of abstract multimodal patterns in young domestic chicks. Animal Cognition, Springer Nature vol. 20 (3), 521-529.  
Relevant PublicationVersace E, Fracasso I, Baldan G, Dalle Zotte A and Vallortigara G (2017). Newborn chicks show inherited variability in early social predispositions for hen-like stimuli. Scientific Reports, Springer Nature vol. 7 (1) 


Relevant PublicationRogers LJ, Frasnelli E and Versace E (2016). Lateralized antennal control of aggression and sex differences in red mason bees, Osmia bicornis. Scientific Reports, Springer Nature vol. 6 (1) 


Relevant PublicationVersace E, Nolte V, Pandey RV, Tobler R and Schlötterer C (2014). Experimental evolution reveals habitat‐specific fitness dynamics among Wolbachia clades in Drosophila melanogaster. Molecular Ecology, Wiley vol. 23 (4), 802-814.  


solid heart iconGrants of specific relevance to the Centre for Brain and Behaviour
solid heart iconGeneralisation from limited experience: how to solve the problem of induction
Elisabetta Versace
£269,334 Leverhulme Trust (23-08-2021 - 31-03-2026)

solid heart iconRoyal Society Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellowships 2021 - Generalisation using sparse data: From animal to artificial systems
Elisabetta Versace
£61,326 Royal Society (01-11-2021 - 30-06-2024)
solid heart iconDevelopmental reprogramming following prenatal acoustic signals
Elisabetta Versace
£518,189 BBSRC Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (01-12-2018 - 31-01-2024)
solid heart iconGeneral AI and interactive robots for farming
Elisabetta Versace and Alan Walker
£22,000 Alan Turing Institute, The (01-01-2020 - 28-02-2021)