Lines of Research
Nowadays neuroscience research methods are penetrating into almost all fields of science. This is not surprising given that understanding brain organization and functioning can give us new insights about individual responses and reactions to different stimuli, explaining some aspects of even very complex human behavior.
While it is extremely important to investigate the general principles of brain functioning, it is equally important to search for neurological correlates of individual physiological reactions and behavior. These issues are addressed in several our projects:
1. Predicting individual responses to Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS).
TMS is a powerful non-invasive approach with multiple diagnostic and therapeutic applications that is widely used both in clinics and research. During TMS, a magnetic pulse is delivered using an electromagnetic coil to stimulate the neurons within a particular region of interest. Despite its successful application under various conditions, TMS remains a state-of-art approach with its effects being highly variable across individuals. It is believed that a substantial portion of such variability may be explained by the underlying individual anatomy of the conducting nervous pathways. The aim of this project is to establish a link between the individual anatomical data obtained from Diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging (dMRI) and the observed induced individual TMS effects.
2. Predicting motor outcome in chronic ischemic stroke patients.
Identifying predictors of motor outcome after stroke is one of the crucial problems in neurorehabilitation. Structural integrity and functional state of brain hemispheres are believed to be among the most important factors. Hence, the goal of this project is to evaluate them using a combined TMS-dMRI approach in order to reveal the predictors of (un)favourable outcome in chronic patients suffering from ischemic stroke.
- A.S. Limonova, M.A. Nazarova, S.P. Kulikova, L.A. Dobrynina, M.A. Piradov, R.N. Konovalov. Assessment of the intra-and inter-hemispheric connectivity and functional state of hemispheres in patients with chronic stroke. Технологии живых систем, 2016; 8: p.37-42 (in Russian)
-Nazarova M., Kulikova S., Konovalov R. N., Novikov P., Piradov M. A. DTI-TMS assessment of corticospinal tracts integrity and unaffected hemisphere state in chronic ischemic stroke patients // poster at ESMRMB Annual Scientific Meeting 2016
3. Predicting long-term outcome in children after ischemic stroke.
Stroke in children is a quite rare condition with a complex and poorly understood etiology. The goal of this project is to identify the predictors of long-term outcome in children with ischemic stroke based on the multimodal dataset created at the Ural Federal University. This dataset is the largest existing for stroke children and contains anatomical, electro-physiological, behavioral, genetical and socio-economical information about each patient.
4. Role of Emotions in Decision Making
There is no doubt that emotions play an important role in our everyday life affecting our behavior. However, they are often neglected in decision-making research. This paradoxical situation may be due to the fact that it is very hard to formalize and measure them in an objective and reproducible way, especially when you think of conducting an experiment in a real-life situation. Hence, this project has 2 goals. First, to develop a strategy that could be used for automatic on-line detection of different emotional states. Second, to apply the selected strategy in various real-life situations to reveal and evaluate the emotional component in individual behaviour.
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