My research focuses on structural and functional plasticity in amputees.
Amputation is a particularly powerful model for studying plasticity as it combines two major drivers for reorganisation – sensory deprivation and adaptive motor behaviour.
Following amputation of the hand, the brain will undergo extensive organisational changes both due to loss of multisensory input from the absent hand, and as a result of picking up new skills with the intact hand or prosthesis. Some of these neural changes might be advantageous for the amputee but other changes will be damaging, and might even result in chronic pain that is felt in the amputated hand (i.e., ''phantom' limb pain). I'm interested in identifying structural and functional plasticity in the brains of amputees (as well as individuals with congenital limb deficientcy) using a range of neuroimaging techniques. I'm particularly interested in neuronal changes that might be relevant for the rehabilitation process (e.g. prothesis usage, phantom pain). Using non-invasive brain stimulation techniques, I aim to attenuate maladaptive plasticity and enhance adaptive plasticity.
If you are suffering from limb loss, and would like to learn about participating in my studies, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org