[Comp-neuro] Post doc/engineer position in direct brain control of muscle stimulators

Dawn Taylor dxt42 at case.edu
Fri Jan 9 17:45:14 CET 2015

 We currently have an opening for a postdoc or engineer for the vA-funded
neuroprosthetics study described below.  If interested, please send a CV to
Dr. Dawn Taylor at dxt42 at case.edu.

The long-term goal of this project is to enable paralyzed individuals to
use their brain signals to control their upper limb via implanted muscle
stimulators.  Most labs working on brain-controlled neuroprosthetics decode
intended limb kinematics (e.g. velocity, joint angles, etc.) from the
recorded brain signals. However, that approach still requires converting
those kinematic commands into the appropriate stimulation patterns required
to generate the desired limb motion. That conversion process has not been
resolved for the upper limb due to the limb's complex dynamical nature and
the fact that the limb is subject to unknown external forces during use. We
bypass this obstacle by retraining the brain to control muscle stimulators
directly. We have come up with some novel, but clinically feasible ways of
mapping neural signals directly to muscle stimulators. Our methods can
enable the user to have good control over both limb motion and stiffness.
To demonstrate and refine our methods, we are training monkeys to control
the movements of a realistic musculoskeletal model of a paralyzed limb
activated via implanted muscle stimulators. The paralyzed limb simulator
(developed by the lab of Robert Krisch) provides real-time visual feedback
to the animal of the limb motion that would result from stimulating the
paralyzed muscles based on the animal's neural signals decoded in real
time. The use of this real-time paralyzed arm simulator allows us to test
and refine our process of brain-controlled muscle stimulation in monkeys
without actually having to paralyze any animals.

Dawn M. Taylor, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Neuroscience, Cleveland Clinic
Researcher Scientist, Cleveland VA Medical Center, Functional Electrical
Stimulation Center
Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering & of Molecular Medicine, Case
Western Reserve University

The Cleveland Clinic
Lerner Research Institute
9500 Euclid Ave. / NC30
Cleveland, OH 44195
email: dxt42 at case.edu or taylord8 at ccf.org
Phone: (216) 636-0140
Fax: (216) 778-4259
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