NeuroMotor Control Laboratory @ MU

 
 

The mission of the NeuroMotor Control Laboratory is to develop an understanding of how the human nervous system uses information from its senses to guide limb movements and interactions with objects in the physical environment. Because moving and manipulating objects is fundamentally important for maintaining a high quality of life, our work seeks to develop knowledge needed to optimize technologies and therapies for facilitating motor rehabilitation in patients following neural injury and in people with neurodevelopmental disorders.


Current work follows three inter-related lines of experimentation. The first examines how the brain integrates information from multiple senses to guide arm and hand movements.  We ask whether characteristics of the limb’s mechanical environment influence how sensory information is combined to guide motor learning.  The second seeks to understand how sensorimotor control is compromised due to neural injury such as stroke or developmental disorders such as autism. This research also seeks to evaluate whether sensory feedback may be manipulated to facilitate motor adaptation and/or re-learning in these individuals.  The third line of work seeks to identify the neural structures mediating sensorimotor control of limb movement (e.g. moving the hand to swat a fly) and limb posture (i.e. holding the hand at a desired position despite unexpected perturbations). We hope this work will shed new light on the neural basis of sensorimotor deficits both in adult survivors of stroke and in children with autism spectrum disorders.


Lab News

Congratulations to Alexis Krueger! Alexis has been awarded a prestigious Whitaker Foundation International Fellowship to pursue her Masters Degree, which will establish a new collaboration between the NMCL and Dr. Maura Casadio’s lab at the Università degli Studi di Genova, Genova, Italy.


Congratulations to Nicole Salowitz, for winning the “Best Paper” award for her conference paper “Salowitz NMG, Dolan B, Remmel R, Van Hecke A, Mosier KM, Simo L, Scheidt RA (2013) Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Goal-Directed Reaching in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Feasibility Study. Conf Proc World Multi-Conf Syst, Cybern & Inform, Orlando, FL”.


Congratulations to Maria Bengtson for successfully defending her dissertation proposal June 2013.


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. BES 0238442, by the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development under grant Nos. R01HD53727, R01NS053581 and R24HD039627 and by the Whitaker, Birnschein, Way-Klingler and Falk Foundations. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health and/or the foundations supporting this work.

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last edited: April  2014

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