For a better experience, click the Compatibility Mode icon above to turn off Compatibility Mode, which is only for viewing older websites.

Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy Neuroengineering Research

The research program in neuroengineering seeks to use engineering and physical science principles to understand the nervous system's circuit operation and build novel devices to interface with this circuitry. Researchers in this area draw from the fields of bioengineering, robotics, neural networks, neural engineering, biomechanics, neuroprosthetics, neurorobotics, information theory and coding principles in spike trains, population coding in neural representations, computational neuroscience, neural simulation and modeling, and 'wet' electrophysiology and neurophysiology. Building interfaces to the nervous system and building Brain Machine Interfaces (BMI) provides novel circuit analysis tools for neuroscience, and enables novel prosthetics, novel rehabilitation methods and novel human interfaces for augmented function.

Research efforts focus on a range of topics. First, there is an emphasis on understanding spinal motor control using basic neurophysiology, models and biomechanics (Dr. Giszter), Hodgkin-Huxley models (Dr. Rybak) and spinal cord injury models (Dr. Giszter and Dr. Dougherty). A second goal is to develop neuroprosthetics for treatment of spinal cord injury and movement disorders using neural microstimulation, epidural stimulation, viral therapies and optogenetic controls (Dr. Giszter and Dr. Dougherty). Third we examine cortical encoding and functional plasticity using multi-electrode recording, optical imaging, optogenetics and microstimulation in spinal cord injury models (Dr. Giszter). Finally we explore Brain Machine Interfaces and neurorobotics in rodent models using multi-electrode recording (Dr. Giszter). Work is conducted collaboratively between laboratories in the Departments of Neurobiology & Anatomy, and Pharmacology & Physiology in the College of Medicine, and Drexel University's School of Bioengineering and Health Systems, and off-campus colleagues.

The ultimate goal of this research effort is to obtain a deeper understanding of the design and function of circuitry supporting motor behaviors and sensory processing, and to understand its adaptation and plasticity. The natural outcome of this understanding will be improved treatment, improved rehab therapy, and novel prosthetics and assistive devices to overcome deficits due to various neurological diseases and stroke.

Learn about the graduate program in Neuroengineering

Related Faculty

Kimberly Dougherty, PhD

Kimberly Dougherty, PhD

Assistant Professor
Department: Neurobiology & Anatomy
Visit Lab

 
Simon Giszter, PhD

Simon Giszter, PhD

Professor
Department: Neurobiology & Anatomy
Research Interests: Spinal cord organization and control of limb biomechanics
Visit Profile

 
Michel Lemay, PhD

Michel Lemay, PhD

Adjunct Professor
Department: Neurobiology & Anatomy
View Profile

 
placeholder

Karen Moxon, PhD

Associate Professor
Department: Neurobiology & Anatomy
Research Interests: Computational modeling, neural modeling, neurorobotics
View Profile

 
Ilya Rybak, PhD

Ilya Rybak, PhD

Professor
Department: Neurobiology & Anatomy
Research Interests: Computational neuroscience, motor control, modeling neural control of respiration and locomotion
Visit Lab for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience

 
 Back to Top

Enlarged neuronet, glassy texture.