The program will be composed by regular, special and poster sessions, and workshops. Furthermore, plenary lectures will be given by well-known scientists in the field of NeuroRehabilitation. The program will aim at enriching the knowledge of the participants, widening their point of view on specific topics related to NeuroRehabilitation, and getting in closer contact with experts in this field.
Confirmed plenary speakers:
Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Maribor
University of Alberta. Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Northwestern University and Shirley Ryan Ability Lab
Title: Model-based motor learning and its clinical implications
Abstract: A growing body of evidence suggests that when we interact physically with our environments our brains form models of the deterministic connection between our actions and the ensuing sensory information. Theories of motor learning posit that the formation of internal models is a key mechanism though which the brain forms predictions about the outcomes of actions, overcoming certain limitations of the biological feedback system. Consistent with these theories, experiments with human-robot interactions have demonstrated the ability of the brain to capture the difference between random and deterministic forces. After a brief review of some earlier studies, I will focus on a family of human-machine interfaces that create a many-to-one mapping between body motions and movements of an external controlled object. In this context, the user learns to control the external object by forming an inverse model of the interface mapping. I will describe this learning process as a state-based dynamical system and will discuss how machine learning may connect with human learning to facilitate the acquisition of motor skills and their recovery after injury to the nervous system.
Ferdinando (Sandro) Mussa-Ivaldi graduated in Physics from the University of Torino. In 1987 he obtained a PhD in biomedical engineering from the Politecnico of Milano. In 1982 he moved to the United States, to work at MIT in the laboratory of Emilio Bizzi in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. Although he planned to stay there for a brief training period, he left 11 years later to take a faculty position in Chicago at Northwestern University, where he is currently Professor of Physiology, Physical medicine and Rehabilitation and Biomedical Engineering. He joined the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, now the Shirley Ryam Ability Lab, and founded the Robotics Laboratory, dedicated to the study of human motor learning and to the rehabilitation after stroke and spinal cord injury through the interaction with intelligent machines. His areas of interest and expertise include robotics, neurobiology of the sensory-motor system, motor learning and computational neuroscience.