The Interdisciplinary Training Program in Rehabilitation and Neuromuscular Plasticity (NMPT) at the University of Florida (UF) was initiated in 2003. The overall goal of this program is to help build a critical capacity of well- trained rehabilitation scientists capable of conducting translational neuromuscular plasticity research. This predoctoral training program is unique in that it emphasizes the interaction and joint training of rehabilitation clinicians and basic science trainees. Candidates are selected from a pool of outstanding students with diverse backgrounds and are admitted by one of three graduate programs: Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences, Rehabilitation Sciences or Applied Physiology and Kinesiology. The program capitalizes on several existing strengths including a core of well-established and productive rehabilitation investigators, outstanding research facilities and integrated interdisciplinary centers, an exemplary record of collaboration, strong institutional commitment, and a culture of successful mentorship in rehabilitation at multiple levels, including graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty. The NMPT program is a well-defined, closely mentored program with clearly established training objectives and an effective evaluation process. Upon entering the program, each Trainee prepares an individualized training plan under the guidance of an experienced Faculty Mentor and Translational Research Co-Advisor. The individualized plan consists of a structured didactic program, specialized courses, journal clubs and seminars, laboratory research and multiple scientific dissemination experiences. Trainees learn cutting edge research methodologies and acquire extensive research experience, while building a solid foundation in research design. Trainees also benefit from integration in strong Collaborative Translational Research Partnerships around five central themes. Over the past ten years the NMPT program has successfully graduated seventeen graduate students and 94% of NMPT graduates have continued on in postdoctoral positions. The trainees that have graduated have accumulated an excellent record of scholarly productivity, with an average of over 6 peer-reviewed manuscripts. These former trainees are now well-positioned to make contributions in the field of neuromuscular plasticity.

Public Health Relevance

Nationally, there is a shortage of rehabilitation scientists that are qualified to lead interdisciplinary research and develop innovative research programs that address the needs of individuals with disabilities. This application is a renewal application to continue training graduate students with either a clinical or basic science background to help fill this void. These students will perform research in a variety of neurological and neuromuscular conditions, across the lifespan.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZHD1)
Program Officer
Nitkin, Ralph M
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of Florida
Other Health Professions
Schools of Public Health
United States
Zip Code
Morton, Aaron B; Mor Huertas, Andres; Hinkley, J Matthew et al. (2018) Mitochondrial accumulation of doxorubicin in cardiac and diaphragm muscle following exercise preconditioning. Mitochondrion :
Sunshine, Michael D; Ganji, Comron N; Reier, Paul J et al. (2018) Intraspinal microstimulation for respiratory muscle activation. Exp Neurol 302:93-103
Barnard, Alison M; Willcocks, Rebecca J; Finanger, Erika L et al. (2018) Skeletal muscle magnetic resonance biomarkers correlate with function and sentinel events in Duchenne muscular dystrophy. PLoS One 13:e0194283
Hawkins, Kelly A; Fox, Emily J; Daly, Janis J et al. (2018) Prefrontal over-activation during walking in people with mobility deficits: Interpretation and functional implications. Hum Mov Sci 59:46-55
Little, Virginia L; McGuirk, Theresa E; Perry, Lindsay A et al. (2018) Pelvic excursion during walking post-stroke: A novel classification system. Gait Posture 62:395-404
Coronado, Rogelio A; George, Steven Z (2018) The Central Sensitization Inventory and Pain Sensitivity Questionnaire: An exploration of construct validity and associations with widespread pain sensitivity among individuals with shoulder pain. Musculoskelet Sci Pract 36:61-67
Streeter, Kristi A; Sunshine, Michael D; Patel, Shreya et al. (2017) Intermittent Hypoxia Enhances Functional Connectivity of Midcervical Spinal Interneurons. J Neurosci 37:8349-8362
Mercier, L M; Gonzalez-Rothi, E J; Streeter, K A et al. (2017) Intraspinal microstimulation and diaphragm activation after cervical spinal cord injury. J Neurophysiol 117:767-776
Nichols, Nicole L; Satriotomo, Irawan; Allen, Latoya L et al. (2017) Mechanisms of Enhanced Phrenic Long-Term Facilitation in SOD1G93A Rats. J Neurosci 37:5834-5845
Kavazis, Andreas N; Morton, Aaron B; Hall, Stephanie E et al. (2017) Effects of doxorubicin on cardiac muscle subsarcolemmal and intermyofibrillar mitochondria. Mitochondrion 34:9-19

Showing the most recent 10 out of 121 publications