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Research Programs »

RESEARCH PROGRAMS

Adult NeuroRecovery

Operating under the emerging truth that the human spinal cord is just as smart as the brainLocomotor Training and NeuroMuscular Electrical Stimulation are among the techniques used to access spinal cord intelligence. Our globally recruited scientific leaders are designing and conducting leading-edge research to investigate the recovery of autonomic function (e.g., blood pressure regulation, bladder, bowel and sexual function, and the ability to sweat) as well as movement and muscle control in adults with spinal cord injuries.

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Epidural Stimulation

KSCIRC studies are revealing that spinal cord Epidural Stimulation (scES) can activate specific neural circuits. These circuits are accessed by an electrode array surgically implanted over the lower spinal cord. The scES  device and associated therapies have allowed some individuals with SCI to recover function in the autonomic nervous system, others have regained control of volitional (intentional) movement, and some are re-learning how to stand and walk.

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Pediatric NeuroRecovery

Since its inception in 2014, the Kosair Charities Center for Pediatric NeuroRecovery has pioneered rehabilitation targeting recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI) in children from age 18 months to 17 years. The Center has  become an international hub of renowned expertise and distinctive resources. Our scientifically-based therapies capitalize on emerging knowledge of a ‘smart’ spinal cord capable of learning. For children and their families, it is a place where Kids Kick Paralysis and Science = Hope.

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VOP-Dog On Treadmill

Animal Models

After a Spinal Cord Injury, secondary damage such as the loss of oxygen supply to the area of the injury can be significant. A large animal model would advance our understanding of some of the physiological mechanisms that are engaged after injury. We are testing the sensitivity of an epidural Near Infrared Sensor (NIRS) to pharmacologically-induced reductions in spinal cord oxygenation and perfusion. This would a simple noninvasive method to advance the study of effective therapies.

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