People

Principal Investigator

Dr. Michael R. Borich, DPT, PhD
  • BS, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, 2002
  • DPT, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, 2005
  • PhD, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, 2010
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow , University of British Columbia, 2013

Memberships

  • American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine
  • American Physical Therapy Association 
  • American Physical Therapy Association  – Neurology Section
  • American Society for Neurorehabilitation
  • Canadian Stroke Network Trainee Association
  • International White Matter Study Group
  • Organization of Human Brain Mapping
  • Society for Neuroscience 

Honors

  • Pilot Grant, National Center for Neuromodulation in Neurorehabilitation, 2017
  • VCU-Marquette Challenge Grant, Foundation for Physical Therapy, 2017
  • CORRT K12 Scholar, National Institutes of Heath, 2015-Present
  • Clinical Loan Repayment Award, National Institutes of Health, 2015-Present
  • Society for Neuroscience Chapter Postdoctoral Trainee Travel Award, 2013
  • Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute Rising Star Award, 2013
  • Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada Focus on Stroke Research Fellow, 2012-2013
  • Associate Editor, Restorative Neurology and Neuroscience, 2011-Present
  • American Physical Therapy Association Mary McMillian Scholarship Recipient, 2005

Dr. Borich is keenly interested in understanding and harnessing the plastic capacity of the human nervous system in health and disease in an effort to improve rehabilitation outcomes for individuals with neurologic injury and disease. His research utilizes multimodal neuroimaging and neurostimulation techniques to characterize the brain structural and functional correlates of neural plasticity associated with learning and experience.

Trainees & Staffs

Jasmine Mirdamadi, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, NIH F32 Awardee

Dr. Mirdamadi received her PhD in Human Performance and Neuroscience from Indiana University in April 2020. Her research focuses on how the brain integrates sensory information to control movement and learn new skills. She is interested in advancing our understanding on the neural mechanisms of sensory and motor plasticity associated with learning in healthy individuals, and then how these mechanisms are affected by neurological injuries, such as stroke. She is also interested in identifying factors contributing to individual differences in plasticity, through both experience (i.e. practice, rehabilitation) and neuromodulation, to optimize neuroplastic potential and functional behaviors.
In collaboration with Lena Ting and the Neuromechanics Lab, Jasmine is investigating neural correlates of whole-body motion perception and their association to balance ability in neurotypical younger and older adults, and people who have had a stroke.
In her spare time, Jasmine enjoys rock climbing, hiking, baking, and playing with her dogs.
Google Scholar

Photo on 3-29-22 at 1.16 PM - Nathan Baune
Nathan A. Baune, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Emory University  
 
Nathan is a rehabilitation neuroscientist interested in sensory and multisensory contributions to upper limb goal-directed action. He has utilized virtual reality, fMRI, and behavioral measures to study neural and behavioral changes post-stroke and in peripheral nerve injury, including amputees and former amputees that have received a donor hand transplant. He is most interested in the interplay between vision and proprioception, including how their interaction changes following neurological injury or as we age. He is currently working on a project funded by the American Heart Association to identify neurophysiologic assessments of proprioceptive deficit and altered visuo-proprioceptive processing post-stroke. This research relies on measures of brain activity (EEG) along with precision robotics to record markers of sensory change during upper limb behaviors. He has also worked in industry as a co-inventor and Director of Operations in developing a motion AI system which utilizes wearable sensors to track activities of daily living in the homes of stroke survivors. Nathan enjoys the latest technology, especially considering how it can be used to answer difficult research questions. Nathan is also fond of cycling, gardening, snowboarding (which is difficult in Georgia), and hunting mushrooms.
 
 
 

Alejandro Lopez, Graduate Student, Neuroscience Graduate Program, Graduate Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Emory University

Alejandro received his BS with a major in Psychology and a minor in Biological Sciences from San José State University. During his time as an undergraduate, he used an in vitro muscle-nerve preparation technique to investigate the effects of systemic inflammation on muscle proprioceptors, which are important for proprioception and motor control. Findings from this research project revealed that systemic inflammation caused by diet-induced obesity resulted in decreased muscle proprioceptor responses, which may contribute to balance instability during obesity.
Alejandro is currently finishing his PhD in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at Emory University. His dissertation project aims to determine how interactions between descending cortical and spinal reflex circuits shape mobility and balance. Since joining the NPRL, Alejandro has expanded on his methodological toolset by learning neurophysiologic mechanisms underlying human movement and balance, research applications of neuromodulation interventions, and treatment possibilities of combined neurostimulation techniques that improve motor function in neurologically impaired populations.
Outside of the lab, Alejandro is a course instructor for undergraduate students interested in pursuing research and is a graduate fellow for a DEI program through the Laney Graduate School.
Google scholar

Yasmine Bassil, Graduate Student, Neuroscience Graduate Program, Emory University 

Yasmine received her Bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience at the Georgia Institute of Technology where she also completed the Research Option and conducted undergraduate research with Dr. Shella Keilholz as a part of the Keilholz MIND Lab. Her primary undergraduate research focus was studying resting-state functional connectivity and whole-brain dynamics in ADHD using fMRI.
Currently, Yasmine is pursuing her PhD in Neuroscience at Emory University and joined the NPRL as a graduate researcher. She is interested in aging-related changes in the connectivity and plasticity of the human spatial navigation network, using concurrent TMS-fMRI.
She also serves as secretary for the Emory Graduates in Neuroscience (GIN), as well as Editor-in-Chief of “The Central Sulcus,” the program’s student-run publication, and as the Co-Chair of the Emory Neuroscience Graduate Program’s DEI Committee. Additionally, she is a Scholar in the Georgia Tech/Emory T32 Computational Neural Engineering Training Program.
Outside of Emory, she enjoys roller-skating, taking care of her indoor plants, cooking food from various cultural cuisines, visiting museums, thrifting, playing the piano, singing karaoke, and learning how to play the bass guitar!
Google Scholar

Tanah (Andrea) Assale, Laboratory Educator

Tanah (Andrea) graduated from Georgia Tech in 2019 with a Bachelor of Science in psychology. She joined the NPRL lab in the fall of 2021. Broadly speaking, she her interests include measuring neuropsychological predictors of post brain injury/trauma recovery outcomes and exploring the biology of emotions and depression following acquired brain trauma. In her free time she enjoys volunteering with a peace organization she is part of, dancing on afrobeat songs, going to the park with her dogs and learning about space.

Iran Gutierrez, Research Specialist 

Iran graduated from Emory University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Spanish Minor. She is currently working with DPT students studying brain and balance perception. In her free time she enjoys making coffee, going to the gym, going on boba runs and trying new restaurants.

Undergraduates

Anisha Kanukolanu, Undergraduate Student ( Neuroscience major), Georgia Tech

Anisha is an undergraduate student at Georgia Tech majoring Neuroscience. She is currently studying the connectivity & plasticity of Spatial Navigation Networks in Humans Using Concurrent TMS-fMRI. As well as building a VR maze for a Balance, navigation and cognition study. Outside the lab Anisha would be Journaling, Drawing, Puzzling, and Thrifting.

Clara Beth LaFollette, undergraduate student (Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology Major), Emory

Clara Beth LaFollette is a third-year undergraduate at Emory University studying Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology. She is currently working with Dr. Mirdamadi, where they are researching structural brain biomarkers of whole body motion perception and balance function in post stroke. In her free time, she enjoys running and is on Emory Running Club, and also enjoys baking.

Emily Cui, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology), Emory University

Emily Cui is a 4th year undergraduate student majoring in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology. As an undergraduate, she has studied the coevolution of signaling behaviors in songbird and betta fish species and the horizontal/vertical transmission of gut microbiomes in bean beetles. Her current neuroscience research interests surround spatial navigation in younger and older adults, specifically looking at allocentric & egocentric reference frame bias. Emily is passionate about accessibility in the STEM field and is one of the managing editors of Grey Matters Emory, a neuroscience journal organization that publishes articles and art written and created by undergraduate students. She also loves listening to music and plays the flute and piano. When she’s at home, she enjoys watching Celtics games with her family and annoying her cat, Sammy, and her dog, Mia. In the future, she would love to travel more with friends and explore new places.

Suyoung Yun, Undergraduate Student ( biomedical engineering major), Georgia Tech

Suyoung is an undergraduate student at Georgia Tech majoring Biomedical engineering. She is currently working with Dr. Baune on the Neurophysiological assessment of proprioceptive deficit and altered Visio-proprioceptive processing post-stroke”. She recently started cooking and knitting.

Eden Zhu, Neuroscience PhD Program, Emory University

She is interested in movement study, human disease medical research, electrophysiology and neuroplasticity. She is from physics/math/computer/engineering background while discovered her passion for biology, nature and medical-related content. So she shifted to a neuroscience PhD and enjoy every day.

 

Hyungjun Park [Richy],  Undergraduate Student (Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering Major), Georgia Tech

Hyungjun (Richy) is an undergraduate student at Emory University majoring in Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering. He is currently working with Dr. Borich on a Wearable device for haptic and active-assist for hand rehab post-stroke. In his free time he enjoys hanging out with Friends, trying to teach/learn new skills and participating in Hackathons.

Hannah Odom, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience), Georgia Tech

Hannah is an undergraduate student at Georgia Tech majoring in Neuroscience. She is currently working with Dr. Mirdamadi studying Balance Perception and SEP Collection. In her free time she enjoys lifting, listening to new Spotify finds, and sleeping!

Camille Guzman, Graduate Student Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Tech & Emory

Camille is a PhD candidate in the Biomedical Engineering Program at Emory and Georgia Tech. In her free time she enjoys p
laying volleyball, running, and taking pictures of her dog

Natasha Setiadi, Undergraduate Student (Computer Science), Georgia Tech

Natasha is an undergraduate student at Georgia Tech majoring in Computer Science. She is currently working on the biofeedback interface to study hand and wrist motor control in healthy and post-stroke individuals. In her free time she enjoys Fencing, reading webtoons/comics, listening to music, and playing video games.

Alumni

  • Mary Alice White, DPT, Graduate Student, Applied Physiology, Georgia Tech
  • Ricardo Rivera, Undergraduate Student ( biomedical engineering major), Georgia Tech
  • Jay Desai, Undergraduate Student (Biology Major), Emory University
  • Jacob Stein, Undergraduate Student (Psychology Major), Emory University
  • Mahi Patel, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience), University of Pennsylvania
  • Cassie McIltrot, Undergraduate Student (Biomedical Engineering), Georgia Tech
  • Michael Arrington, Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Shiyu Lin, Graduate Student, Doctor of Physical Therapy Program, Emory University
  • Amuyla Noone, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience), Georgia Tech
  • Ayanna Bell, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience and Artificial Intelligence), Agnes Scott College
  • Manish Bhatta, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology), Emory University
  • Joanna Yu, Undergraduate Student (Human Health and Sociology), Emory University
  • Lauren Edwards, MS, Neuroscience 2020, Emory University
  • Martin Tan, B.S. (Biology, Philosophy), Research Assistant. Current: Medical Student at University of Tennessee College of Medicine
  • Befkadu Walthour, Undergraduate Student (Cognitive & Behavioral Neuroscience), College of Wooster, Emory LGS-SOAR Scholar
  • Maria Krakovski, Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Kirthi Rao, Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Scott Heston, Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Tarushi Tanaya, Undergraduate Student (Quantitative Science in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology), Research Partners Program Awardee. Current: Medical Student at University of Alabama-Birmingham
  • Cassie Fierro, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience, Behavioral Biology), SIRE and SURE awardee Emory University. Current: Research Coordinator – University of Michigan
  • Akash Patel, Undergraduate Student, (Quantitative Science in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology), Emory University. Current: Medical Student at University of Tennessee College of Medicine
  • Alex Chen, Undergraduate Student (Chemical Engineering), PURA recipient Georgia Tech. Current: Medical Student at Medical College of Georgia
  • Sarah Coolidge, Undergraduate Student, Research Partners Program Awardee, Emory University
  • Arsh Momin, Undergraduate Student (Computer Science), PURA recipient, Georgia Tech. Current: Medical Student at Medical College of Georgia
  • Rick Saha, Undergraduate Student, PURA recipient, Georgia Tech. Current: Medical Student at Medical College of Georgia
  • Whitney Gray, NIH StrokeNet Fellow, Georgia StrokeNet Regional Coordinating Center
  • Alice Halter, Undergraduate Student, Emory University
  • Dev Mandavia, Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Kanchi Patel, Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Aanand Patel, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience), Emory University. Current: MSc in Global Health Student at Kings College, London
  • Timothy Lee, Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience), Emory University
  • Puneeth Guruprasad, Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Layla Darian, Undergraduate Student (Business, Pre-PT), Georgia Tech
  • Chris Kontoghiorghes, Undegraduate Student (Chemistry), Emory University. Current: Medical Student at Tulane University
  • Eric Oetter, DPT Student, Emory University
  • Benjamin Chong, Volunteer
  • Sumi Sato, DPT Student, Emory University. Current: PhD Student at University of Massachusetts-Amherst
  • Aditya Santoki, Intern, Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology
  • Colby Wallace, DPT Student, Emory University