Advances in basic sciences related to cognition, motor control, and neuroplasticity offer exciting opportunities for treatment advances in neurorehabilitation. Maturation of promising discoveries to validated treatments faces the translational research challenges familiar to all biomedical domains, while also encountering some rehabilitation-specific obstacles. Research collaborators from Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute and Behavioral Neurology and the Center for Functional Neuroimaging at the University of Pennsylvania join forces to offer a post-doctoral research training program in Translational Neurorehabilitation Research, built on the platform of more than 15 years of multidisciplinary collaboration. The program will train 5 postdoctoral fellows at a time, recruited from basic science and clinical disciplines, using a mixture of didactic and hands-on training methods. Added this cycle are positions for 2 short-term summer training positions annually for medical students from underrepresented minorities. Program faculty collectively have expertise in 5 key themes that are critical to maturation of treatments from initial concept to validated treatment, including: Theories of normal and abnormal processing; Impairment assessment; Naturalistic assessment; Modulation of neuronal plasticity and learning mechanisms; and Theory-driven treatment trials, and are experienced in a range of cutting edge research tools, including structural and functional neuroimaging, eye- and motion-tracking, computational modeling, virtual reality, psychopharmacology, transcranial magnetic stimulation and transcranial direct current stimulation. Moreover, several individual faculty and collaborative groups have demonstrated expertise in advancing assessments and treatments toward clinical implementation. Thus, trainees have the ability to learn specific tools and perspectives that are applicable to neurorehabilitation research, while benefiting from mentored exposure to the process of translating scientific advances into clinically useful assessments and treatments.

Public Health Relevance

Central nervous system injuries and diseases frequently lead to persistent cognitive and movement impairments that limit independence, functional abilities, and quality of life. Advances in a number of scientific domains offer new tools to improve patient assessment and rehabilitation interventions. The proposed training program, led by a group of long-standing collaborators at Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute and the University of Pennsylvania's Department of Neurology, will prepare trainees to conduct translational neurorehabilitation research that will help turn these scientific advances into feasible assessment and treatment tools that can reduce the disabling effects of neurologic disease.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Type
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
Project #
2T32HD071844-06
Application #
9491172
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZHD1)
Program Officer
Nitkin, Ralph M
Project Start
2013-05-13
Project End
2023-04-30
Budget Start
2018-09-14
Budget End
2019-04-30
Support Year
6
Fiscal Year
2018
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Name
Albert Einstein Medical Center (Philadelphia)
Department
Type
DUNS #
148406911
City
Philadelphia
State
PA
Country
United States
Zip Code
19141
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