Michael R. Borich, DPT, Ph.D.

Principal Investigator

  • 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 & Staff

Jasmine Mirdamadi, Research Scientist
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Emory University
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.

Nathan Baune, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Emory University
AHA Postdoctoral Fellowship Awardee
 
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.
Patrick Knox, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Emory University

Dr. Knox received his DPT and PhD in Biomechanics and Movement Science from the University of Delaware. His research focuses on the interplay between maladaptive sensorimotor function, neuroplasticity, and chronic pain. Currently, he is interested in determining how perceptual deficits may contribute to balance dysfunction and disability in older adults with chronic low back pain. He is also interested in utilizing measures of brain activity to delineate the perception of pain from the sensory encoding of noxious stimuli in adults with and without chronic pain. In his free time, he enjoys hiking, cycling, weight training, golfing, and playing with his dog. 

Andrew Monaghan, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Emory University, Georgia Institute of Technology
McCamish Postdoctoral Fellowship Awardee
 
Andrew finished his master’s degree in the SNL in the Fall of 2018 and his PhD in Dr. Daniel Peterson’s Gait and Balance Disorders Laboratory at Arizona State University. Prior to CSU, Andrew graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Clinical Exercise Physiology from Mississippi State University. Andrew’s research interests include understanding the reasons behind falls in individuals with neurological conditions and implementing effective strategies to reduce their occurrence. His research aims to utilize the principles of biomechanics and motor control principles to understand gait and balance in healthy and clinical populations to lower fall risk. To this end, he is interested in identifying balance deficits, exploring the neural mechanisms of balance control, and the influence of cognition on mobility and motor learning. In Andrew’s leisure time, you can find him running anywhere and everywhere. When not running, Andrew is supporting his favorite soccer team Celtic FC and his Mississippi State Bulldogs in the SEC.
Yasmine Bassil, PhD Candidate
Neuroscience Graduate Program, Emory University
NSF GRFP Awardee

Yasmine received her Bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience at the Georgia Institute of Technology, where she completed the Research Option certificate and conducted undergraduate research with Dr. Shella Keilholz as a part of the Keilholz MIND Lab. Her primary undergraduate research focused on 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 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 the Co-Chair of the Emory Neuroscience Graduate Program’s Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) Committee, as well as the Secretary for the Graduates in Neuroscience organization. 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.

Eden Zhu, PhD Candidate
Neuroscience Graduate Program, Emory University
 
Eden is interested in movement study, human disease medical research, electrophysiology and neuroplasticity. While she is from a physics/math/computer/engineering background, she has discovered her passion for biology, nature, and medicine through her studies. She switched paths to pursue a PhD in Neuroscience and enjoys it every day.
Camille Guzman, PhD Student
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Emory University, Georgia Institute of Technology
 
Camille received her B.S. in Biomedical Engineering (BME) from Northwestern University (go cats!) in 2021. She is currently a PhD student in the Emory and Georgia Tech BME program and a fellow in the GT/Emory NIH T32 Computational Neural Engineering Training Program. She is co-advised by Dr. Michael Borich and Dr. Trisha Kesar. Camille is using peripheral nerve stimulation to understand how spinal excitability is modulated during cognitive-motor dual-task conditions as a function of age. In her free time, Camille loves to play board games, watch TV (and force her labmates to watch her favorite shows), and taking naps with her dog, Ralphie.
Iran Gutierrez, PhD Student
Neuroscience Graduate Program, Emory University
 
Iran received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Emory University in 2022. After graduating, she worked as a research specialist in the Neural Plasticity Research Lab. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Neuroscience at Emory University. She is co-advised by Dr. Michael Borich and Dr. Lena Ting. Iran is interested in understanding the neural mechanisms underlying cognitive-motor impairments in aging and clinical populations as well as the development of personalized rehabilitative interventions. Outside of lab, Iran loves to go on walks with her miniature dachshund Butters, workout, hang out at coffee shops, and work on her car.
Emily Cui, Research Specialist
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Emory University
Emory NBB Highest Honors; Emory 100 Senior Honorary 2023 Awardee
 

Emily graduated summa cum laude from Emory University in May 2023 with a B.S. in Neuroscience & Behavioral Biology (NBB). During her undergraduate senior year, she was mentored by Yasmine Bassil, pursuing a thesis project investigating spatial navigation ability (specifically reference frame utilization) in the context of human aging. After graduating, she has assumed a new role as research specialist. In her spare time, Emily loves to play flute, read, complete frustrating puzzles, go on nature walks, explore the city of Atlanta, and travel. She is also an avid Boston Celtics fan (go Cs!) and loves animals (she has two pet cats, Sammy & Pipper, at home).

Catie Mason, Affiliated PhD Candidate
Neuroscience Graduate Program, Emory University
NIH F31 Awardee
 
Catie received her Bachelors of Science in Biology with a concentration in Physiology & Neuroscience from NC State University. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Neuroscience at Emory University, and she’s also a member of Dr. Trisha Kesar’s MOTIONs Lab and Dr. Lena Ting’s Neuromechanics Lab. Catie uses Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) during cognitive-motor dual-tasks to study cognitive-motor circuit interactions in the cortex that contribute to standing balance control. She is interested in elucidating how cognitive-motor circuits change across age and cognitive ability and how these changes may contribute to high fall risk. Catie’s work is funded by the F31 Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA). In her free time, Catie loves to play video games, sing Broadway show tunes, and explore the city!
Fisayo Aloba, Affiliated PhD Candidate
Neuroscience Graduate Program, Emory University
NIH T32 Awardee 2021-2022; NIH F31 Awardee
 
Fisayo received her BS in Medical Rehabilitation (Physiotherapy) from Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria, then received her Master’s in Physical Therapy from MGH Institute of Health Professions in Boston and her Doctor of Physical Therapy from Texas Tech University HSC School of Health Professions. She is in the Ph.D. Neuroscience program at Emory investigating different combinations of interventions in people who have spatial neglect and gait deficits post-stroke. She uses both clinical and neurophysiological outcome measures to compare their effectiveness/efficacy. Outside of the lab, she loves to explore and travel.

Undergraduate Students

Suyoung Yun, Undergraduate Student
Biomedical Engineering (BME) Major
Georgia Institute of Technology
 

Suyoung is a fourth-year undergraduate student at Georgia Tech majoring in biomedical engineering. She is currently working with Dr. Nathan Baune on the neurophysiological assessment of proprioceptive deficit and altered visio-proprioceptive processing post-stroke. She recently started cooking and knitting.

Clara Beth LaFollette, Undergraduate Student
Neuroscience & Behavioral Biology (NBB) Major
Emory NBB Highest Honors; Emory 100 Senior Honorary 2024 Awardee
Emory University
 

Clara Beth is a fourth-year undergraduate student at Emory University studying Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology. She is currently working with Dr. Jasmine 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.

Jesse DeMatteo, Undergraduate Student (Class of ‘23.5)
Biomedical Engineering Major, Robotics Minor
Georgia Institute of Technology
 
Jesse graduated Georgia Tech with a major in biomedical engineering and a minor in robotics in December 2023. He is currently involved in two projects: 1) Mitigating nausea while using an omnidirectional treadmill; and 2) Investigating brain activity during operation of the Kinarm robot. His hobbies include exercising and napping.
 
 
Emma Funderburg, Undergraduate Student
Neuroscience & Behavioral Biology (NBB) Major
Emory University
 
Emma is a third-year undergraduate student at Emory studying Neuroscience & Behavioral Biology. She is currently working with Yasmine Bassil to study the neural correlates of reference frame utilization in human spatial navigation across the lifespan. In her free time, Emma loves to go to spin classes, cook, & go to concerts.
Ashley Pelton, Undergraduate Student
Neuroscience Major, Computer Science Minor
Georgia Institute of Technology
 
Akarshana Arunkumar, Undergraduate Student
Georgia Institute of Technology
 
Akarshana is a first-year undergraduate student at Georgia Tech. She is currently working with Yasmine Bassil to study the biological and behavioral correlates of aging effects on human spatial navigation. Outside of the lab, Akarshana loves to go to the gym, listen to music, and dance.
Alan Shnir, Undergraduate Student
Statistics in Biology Major, Business Minor
Emory University
 
Alan is a second-year undergraduate student at Emory University with a major in Statistics and minor in Business. Alan is currently working with Dr. Nathan Baune to create machine learning models that can detect EEG components correlated with upper-limb movement quality on a Kinarm machine. Outside of the lab, Alan loves to play guitar, listen to audiobooks, work on startups, and travel.
Kanishka Sindhwani, Undergraduate Student
Neuroscience Major
Georgia Institute of Technology
 
Kanishka is a first-year undergraduate student at Georgia Tech. She is currently working with Dr. Jasmine Mirdamadi, Dr. Nathan Baune and Iran Gutierrez to determine the functional contributions of motor cortical regions to motor skill learning. In her free time, Kanishka loves to run, travel, and play the piano.
Ana Pichanick, Undergraduate Student
Neuroscience Major, French Minor
Georgia Institute of Technology
 
Ana is a second-year undergraduate student at Georgia Tech majoring in Neuroscience and minoring in French. She is working with Dr. Nathan Baune to uncover the neural mechanisms underlying proprioceptive performance in older and younger adults as well as in individuals post-stroke using a Kinarm machine. Apart from research, Ana figure skates competitively and loves to bake.
Janki Shah, Undergraduate Student
Neuroscience Major, Physiology Minor
Georgia Institute of Technology
 
Janki is a second-year undergraduate student at Georgia Tech majoring in Neuroscience with a minor in Physiology. She is currently working with Catie Mason to study how cognitive resource allocation modulates motor cortical contributions to standing balance. In her free time she loves painting, graphic design, going to the gym, and reading!
Alumni
    • Anisha Kanukolanu; Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience), Georgia Tech
    • Ipsita Bhattacharya; High School Student, Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology
    • Nicholas Hess; Undergraduate Student (Industrial Engineering), Georgia Tech
    • Hyungjun (Richy) Park; Undergraduate Student (Biomedical & Mechanical Engineering), Georgia Tech
    • Natasha Setiadi; Undergraduate Student (Computer Science), Georgia Tech
    • Hannah Odom; Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience), Georgia Tech
    • Valeria Perez; Undergraduate Student, Georgia Tech
    • David Ebhomielen; Medical Student, Emory School of Medicine
    • Van Tran; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine
    • Alexis Costlow; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine
    • Emily Adams; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine
    • Wenhui Lu; Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience & Behavioral Biology), Emory University
    • Alejandro Lopez, PhD; Graduate Student, Neuroscience, Emory University
    • Monica Ferrer; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine
    • Katie Carter, DPT; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine
    • Emma Hilten; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine
    • Erin King, PhD; Graduate Student, Neuroscience, Emory University
    • Mary Alice White, DPT, PhD; Graduate Student, Applied Physiology, Georgia Tech
    • Ricardo Rivera; Undergraduate Student (Biomedical Engineering), Georgia Tech
    • Jay Desai; Undergraduate Student (Biology), Emory University
    • Jacob Stein; Undergraduate Student (Psychology), 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 & Artificial Intelligence), Agnes Scott College
    • Manish Bhatta; Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience & Behavioral Biology), Emory University
    • Joanna Yu; Undergraduate Student (Human Health & Sociology), Emory University
    • Lauren Edwards, MS; Graduate Student, Neuroscience, 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 & Behavioral Biology), Research Partners Program Awardee. Current: Medical Student at University of Alabama-Birmingham
    • Cassie Fierro; Undergraduate Student (Neuroscience & Behavioral Biology), SIRE & SURE awardee, Emory University. Current: Research Coordinator at University of Michigan
    • Akash Patel; Undergraduate Student (Quantitative Science in Neuroscience & 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 School of Medicine
    • Benjamin Chong; Volunteer
    • Sumi Sato; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine. Current: PhD Student at University of Massachusetts-Amherst
    • Aditya Santoki; High School Student, Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology
    • Colby Wallace; DPT Student, Emory School of Medicine
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