CLEAR.

CLOSED LOOP ENGINEERING for ADVANCED REHABILITATION
 

Research Emphases

CLEAR

Closed-Loop Engineering for Advanced Rehabilitation

MECHANICS

Closing-the-loop between  Wearable Technology and Biology to optimize tissue/organ function.

CONTROL & LEARNING

Merging human intelligence and artificial intelligence to achieve environment adaptation, optimal task performance, and safety

USER PERCEPTION

Integrate human perception and cognition into human-machine system and control

 

CLEAR Research Community

Josh Alexander, MD

Josh Alexander, MD

Chair, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

John Baratta, MD, MBA

John Baratta, MD, MBA

Clinical Assistant Professor Medical Director, Stroke Rehabilitation

Troy Blackburn, Ph.D.

Troy Blackburn, Ph.D.

Neuromuscular Research Laboratory

Alper Bozkurt, Ph.D.

Alper Bozkurt, Ph.D.

iBionics - Integrated Bionic Microsystems Lab

Jessica Cassidy, PT, DPT, PhD

Jessica Cassidy, PT, DPT, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Physical Therapy

Jacque Cole Ph.D.

Jacque Cole Ph.D.

Orthopaedic Mechanobiology Laboratory

Scott Ferguson, Ph.D.

Scott Ferguson, Ph.D.

System Design Optimization (SDO) Laboratory

William Filer, MD

William Filer, MD

Clinical Assistant Professor Director, Residency Program

Matt Fisher, Ph.D.

Matt Fisher, Ph.D.

Translational Orthopaedic Research Laboratory

Jason Franz, Ph.D.

Jason Franz, Ph.D.

Applied Biomechanics Laboratory

Henry Fuchs, Ph.D.

Henry Fuchs, Ph.D.

FEDERICO GIL DISTINGUISHED PROFESSOR

Andrea Giovannucci, Ph.D.

Andrea Giovannucci, Ph.D.

Neural Engineering Laboratory

Debby Givens, PT, DPT, PhD

Debby Givens, PT, DPT, PhD

Director and Professor Division of Physical Therapy Department of Allied Health Sciences UNC-CH

Xiaogang Hu, Ph.D.

Xiaogang Hu, Ph.D.

Neuromechanics Laboratory

Helen Huang, Ph.D.

Helen Huang, Ph.D.

Neuromuscular Rehabilitation Engineering Laboratory

Derek Kamper, Ph.D.

Derek Kamper, Ph.D.

Hand Rehabilitation Laboratory

Michael Y. Lee, M.D., M.H.A., C.P.E.

Michael Y. Lee, M.D., M.H.A., C.P.E.

Senior Faculty Physical Medicine & Rehab Baylor College of Medicine

Mike Lewek, Ph.D.

Mike Lewek, Ph.D.

Neurogait Research laboratory

Ming Liu, Ph.D.

Ming Liu, Ph.D.

Research Assistant Professor

Edgar Lobaton, Ph.D.

Edgar Lobaton, Ph.D.

Active Robotic Sensing (ARoS) Laboratory

Karen McCulloch, PT, PhD, NCS

Karen McCulloch, PT, PhD, NCS

Professor Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Neurologic Physical Therapy Division of Physical Therapy Department of Allied Health Sciences

Vicki Mercer, PT, Ph.D.

Vicki Mercer, PT, Ph.D.

Associate Professor Director, Human Movement Science PhD Program Division of Physical Therapy Department of Allied Health Sciences UNC-CH

Blaise Morrison, PhD, CRC, PC

Blaise Morrison, PhD, CRC, PC

Assistant Professor

Zeljko Pantic, Ph.D.

Zeljko Pantic, Ph.D.

Associate Professor Electrical and Computer Engineering

Brian Pietrosimone, PhD, ATC

Brian Pietrosimone, PhD, ATC

Neuromuscular Research Laboratory

Kate Saul, Ph.D.

Kate Saul, Ph.D.

Movement Biomechanics Laboratory

Nitin Sharma, Ph.D.

Nitin Sharma, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Neuromuscular Control & Robotics

Louise Thoma, PT, DPT, PhD

Louise Thoma, PT, DPT, PhD

Paul Weinhold, Ph.D.

Paul Weinhold, Ph.D.

UNC Orthopaedics

Erik Wikstrom, PhD, ATC, LAT

Erik Wikstrom, PhD, ATC, LAT

Assistant Professor, Athletic Training Katherine Smith Gunter Fellow Co-Director, Sport Medicine Research Laboratory Department of Exercise and Sport Science UNC-CH

 

Latest News & Research Videos

Dr. Derek Kamper receives NIDILRR grant that will be used to support postdoc training.

December 21, 2021

LIMB_prosthesis

LIMB_prosthesis
LIMB_prosthesis

LIMB_prosthesis

00:58
Play Video
Validation of a Computer-Based Psychomotor Study

Validation of a Computer-Based Psychomotor Study

03:40
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UL PR Demo_compressed

UL PR Demo_compressed

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NSF Prosthetic Science Now story

NSF Prosthetic Science Now story

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Upcoming Seminars

 
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Randy Trumbower, PT, PhD

Assistant Professor

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Harvard Medical School

September 2, 2022

Seminar Flyer
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 Karl Zelik, PhD

September 30, 2022

Seminar Flyer

Assistant Professor

Department of Mechanical Engineering

 Vanderbilt University

Additional Rehab Related Seminars, Talks & Meetings

Rehab Labs Research Meetings

When: 1st Fri­day of the Month from 9:30am — 10:30am
Dates: See cal­en­dar 
Loca­tions: Engi­neer­ing Build­ing III, Room 4142 & Mary Ellen Jones, Room 9010A

 

About: The sem­i­nar series serves as an oppor­tu­nity for stu­dents to present research progress and obtain feed­back from fac­ulty and their peers. For faculty/ postdocs, the meet­ings serve as a plat­form to share grant sub­mis­sion ideas and solicit feedback.

Recent Presenters

 
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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

June 03, 2022

 

Dr. Sang Wook Lee​, Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Catholic University of America

Topic: Impaired Motor Control of Bimanual Action Following Stroke: Understanding Learned Nonuse

Dr. Lee's talk  presented results from a series of studies that examined functional deficits of stroke survivors affecting their arm choice and bimanual action, which could help us better understand the learned nonuse phenomenon. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

May 06, 2022

 

Dr. Amy N. Adkins​, Assistant Teaching Professor, Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering, UNC Chapel Hill & NC State University

Topic: Validation and Implementation of Multiscale Imaging Techniques for Quantifying Muscle Function and Plasticity

Dr. Adkin's talk  established confidence in the ability to reliably quantify multiscale in vivo muscle structure (from the sarcomere scale to whole muscle) using minimally invasive imaging techniques and demonstrate the extent to which current approaches can detect structural adaptation in human muscle. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

April 01, 2022

 

Dr. Roger Cornwall,

  • Clinical Director, Division of Pediatric Orthopaedics 

  • Director, Hand and Upper Extremity Surgery Fellowship

  • Professor, UC Department of Orthopedic Surgery

Topic: Shifting the Paradigm of Neuromuscular Contractures: A Little Medicine to Prevent a Lot of Surgery

Dr. Cornwall's talk told the story of how a clinical problem encountered during the surgical treatment of contractures following brachial plexus birth injury led to basic biological discoveries reshaping our understanding and potentially our treatment of neuromuscular contractures. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

March 04, 2022

 

Student Presentations:

  • Chelsea "CJ" Parker (Dr. Lewek's Lab), Subtle Variations in Metronome Cues can Alter Gait Without Conscious Awareness to Promote Implicit Learning

  • Emily Eichenlaub (Dr. Franz's Lab), The Neuromechanics of Anticipated and Unanticipated Balance Perturbations During Standing and Walking

  • Morgan Dalman (Dr. Saul's Lab), Computational Modeling of Glenohumeral Contact and Translation

  • Miranda Ludovice (Dr. Kamper's Lab), The Impact of Finger Length and Posture on Muscle Activation Patterns Using OpenSim

  • Wentao Liu (Dr. Huang's Lab), Inferring Human-Robot Performance Objectives during Locomotion using Inverse Reinforcement Learning

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

Febuary 04, 2022

 

Presenters: Gedas Bertasius, Henry Fuchs, Daniel Szafir, and Danielle Szafir

UNC Dept of Computer Science

Topic: The group discussed their own research and a new joint project, Augmented Reality Neurorehabilitation for Monitoring and Management of Motor Symptoms of Parkinson's Disease, which they have started with collaborators Professors Michael Lewek (Physical Therapy) and Nina Browner (Neurology). Topics of discussion included computer vision, egocentric motion tracking, virtual and augmented reality, human-robot interaction, and data visualization.

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

December 03, 2021

 

Dr. Karen Boru Chen, Assistant Professor, Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, NC State University

Topic: Interfacing with virtual environments through bio-signals and bodily motions – integration and application

Dr. Chen's talk presented information about the integration and application of bio-signals and bodily motions to interface with VR. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

October 01, 2021

 

Dr. Pedro Lopes, Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science, University of Chicago

Topic: Integrating Interactive Devices With the User’s Body

Dr. Lopes discussed his work on bodily-integrated devices, which he believes are the natural succession to wearable interfaces and allow us to investigate how interfaces might connect to our bodies in a more direct and personal way. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

September 03, 2021

 

Dr. Rinku Roy, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Topic: Prediction of Fingertip force and Joint Kinematics of Individual Fingers using Motoneuron Firing Activities

Dr. Roy discussed her use of the Neural-drive approach with advanced assistive robotic hands that can help individuals with hand impairment perform daily activities. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

May 07, 2021

 

Dr. Amay Bandodkar, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, NC State University

Topic: Unconventional biochemical sensors and energy devices for applications in wearables and neuro-engineering

Dr. Bandodkar's research interests include working at the interface of electronics, materials science, and biology to realize next-generation conformal sensors and energy devices with broad applications in wearables, implants, and distributed systems. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

April 02, 2021

 

Dr. Hoon Kim, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Topic: Decoding neuromuscular features in ankle muscles: Wavelet transformed EMG signals

Dr. Kim's work examines mobility in older adults and he uses musculoskeletal simulations to understand how gait changes as humans age. Dr. Kim is a Postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Jason Franz's laboratory. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

March 05, 2021

 

Dr. Helen Huang, Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineerinig, University of Central Florida

Topic: Advancing multimodal neuromechanics and understanding of locomotor adaptation

Dr. Huang presented her team’s research on advancing sensor development and methods for using high-density electroencephalography (EEG) to study brain dynamics in multimodal neuromechanics experiments of human locomotion and locomotor adaptation. She also discussed recent findings on brain responses to perturbations during a seated locomotor task and gait stability responses to small perturbations applied on a stride-by-stride basis during walking. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

Feb 05, 2021

 

Dr. Karl Newell, Department of Kinesiology, University of Georgia

Dr. Newell's presentation focused on the learning of new patterns of coordination in human movement.  This a property of skill acquisition that has been underplayed in the traditions of motor learning due to the selection of so-called ‘simple’ low degrees of freedom (DF) tasks or those tasks where the individual can already produce the qualitative properties of the coordination pattern.  The role of order parameters/collective variables from a dynamic systems framework is considered as essential to the early formative stage of skill acquisition.  Theoretical, experimental and practical implications and challenges of this approach to the learning of movement forms will be discussed. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

Dec 04, 2020

 

Dr. Varun Nalam (Postdoc Fellow, Mentor: Helen Huang)

 

Dr. Nalam's presentation discussed understanding how humans modulate their ankle behavior during various tasks could aid in advancement of assistive and rehabilitative care of people suffering from neurodegenerative disorders. The research presented in this talk focuses on quantifying ankle impedance modulation during balance and walking in different environments and its implications in development of patient specific rehabilitation protocols for people suffering from Multiple Sclerosis and Stroke. 

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Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

Nov 13, 2020

 

Topic: Rehabilitation Research and Engineering Center:  Collaborative Machines Enhancing Therapies (COMET)

 

Speakers: Dr. Ferdinando Mussa-Ivaldi (Northwestern U/ Shirley Ryan AbilityLab)

     Body-Machine Interface: Recovering muscle control

Dr. Heike Vallery (TU Delft)

     GyroBalance: Adaptive wearable balance trainer

Dr. Arun Jayaraman (Shirley Ryan AbilityLab/ Northwestern U)

      Soft Exosuit: Variable collaborative assistance for functional 

      gait recovery in stroke

Dr. James Patton (University of Illinois at Chicago/ Shirley Ryan AbilityLab)

     Augmentation Exoskeletons: Smart passive devices for arm

     function recovery

Dr. David Reinkensmeyer (University of California, Irvine)

     Wearable Sensing: Custom feedback for encouraging

     movement practice

Past Presenters

Oct 02, 2020

Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

Dr. Blaise Morrison, Assistant Professor, Department of Allied Health Sciences, Division of Clinical Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling

Dr. Morrison's  presentation highlighted the need for family-system interventions that target psychosocial adjustment and community participation after brain injury. Dr. Morrison also provided an overview of his research program and intervention development plan.

Sep 04, 2020

Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

Dr. Quentin Sanders (ARRT Postdoc Fellow, Mentor: Derek Kamper)

Dr. Sanders discussed how to optimize the usage of wearable robotic technologies for hand rehabilitation after stroke and demonstrated the progress being made by considering three key areas: usership patterns of wearable hand sensing technology in real-world settings, sensory and motor control of the hand after stroke, and the mechanical design and intuitive control of wearable soft robotic technologies for the hand.

Sep 04, 2020

Joint Rehab/Regen Monthly Meeting

Emily McCain (Graduate Student, Adviser: Kate Saul)

Emily McCain discussed her ASB presentation: Using a custom 3d printed ankle stay and a lockable DonJoy knee brace this research imposed unilateral, joint-specific restrictions in range of motion (ROM) to provide insight into what gait adaptations are solely the result of isolated joint deficits and which are the result of simultaneous multi-joint impairments. This framework allowed us to separate the relative impact of ankle versus knee restriction and understand their interaction on mechanical compensations and the resultant energetic penalties during walking. We hope our results can help optimize future designs of rehabilitative techniques and technology by providing insight into trade-offs of intervening at one lower-limb joint versus another.