Special NIH Presentation: Innovative Assessment and Treatment of Movement Disorders in Children with Cerebral Palsy using Wearable Devices

Please join us Friday, February 5, 2021, from 2:30 PM to 3:30 PM for a special presentation about “Innovative Assessment and Treatment of Movement Disorders in Children with Cerebral Palsy using Wearable Devices” by Dr. Thomas C. Bulea.

Dr. Thomas C. Bulea’s overarching research goal is to develop novel engineering technology to improve the lives of individuals with movement disorders. A recent emphasis of his research has been on children with cerebral palsy (CP), the most common pediatric movement disorder.  This talk will present his work developing new methods to deploy electroencephalography (EEG) to capture cortical activity underlying movement execution during functional tasks such as walking, including techniques for artifact removal, source localization, and measuring cortical connectivity. Recent results comparing individual and group-level differences in those with and without CP will be discussed as they identify several outcome measures that could serve as clinical biomarkers to assess motor development and targets for rehabilitation interventions. Dr. Bulea will also discuss novel approaches for exoskeleton mediated gait training and their evaluation in children with CP, including dynamic assistance paradigms that alter user muscle activity, real-time adaptive control based on user effort, and hybrid systems that combine exoskeletons and functional electrical stimulation. His results demonstrate that these approaches are safe, well-tolerated, and improve volitional function in the short term suggesting their potential as a therapy. Finally, challenges and potential solutions to applying these technologies in clinical populations will be discussed including the potential of combining mobile neuroimaging with wearable robotics to enhance understanding of underlying pathology and to personalize rehabilitation of individuals with neuromotor disorders.

Dr. Thomas C. Bulea is a Staff Scientist in the Functional & Applied Biomechanics Section of the Rehabilitation Medicine Department at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center, Bethesda, MD. He received his Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from Case Western Reserve University and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the National Institutes of Health and a visiting post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Houston. Dr. Bulea’s research focuses on the integration of neural interfacing and functional neuroimaging with rehabilitation robotics to develop new therapeutic tools and interventions for treatment of movement disorders and paralysis, with a recent emphasis on children with cerebral palsy. Dr. Bulea also serves as the Director of Training for the Rehabilitation Medicine Department, as an Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, and as a Topic Editor for Frontiers in Robotics and AI: Biomedical Robotics.

The lecture will be held “live” virtually on ZoomGov at:

https://nih.zoomgov.com/j/1600911235?pwd=OUNHUXk5UU9xTzBUcmlWOVhNcTJjQT09

Meeting ID: 160 091 1235

Passcode: 234091

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Meeting ID: 160 091 1235

Passcode: 234091

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Individuals with disabilities who need reasonable accommodation to participate in this event should contact Cris Leite, LeiteC@mail.nih.gov, 301-221-3806, 5 days in advance of this presentation’s date to discuss accommodation needs.