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Related Information

David Westwood, PhD

Associate Professor

 

CONTACT INFORMATION

School of Health and Human Performance (Kinesiology),
Faculty of Health Professions, Dalhousie University
(with appointments in Ophthalmology, Clinical Vision Sciences, Psychiatry, Psychology)
Scientific Staff, IWK Health Centre
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Background

Dr. David Westwood seeks to understand how the nervous system controls skilled body movements, with the aim of guiding the development of treatments for the movement disorders that are associated with stroke, Parkinson's disease, and various visual diseases. Ongoing studies use a variety of behavioural and neuroimaging techniques to explore the interactions between visual attention, eye movements, and upper-limb movements.

One recent study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to reveal the existence of movement direction encoding in several parts of the brain. This neuroimaging approach will help us to understand the nature of motor recovery after stroke. Other recent studies have highlighted important differences in the control mechanisms underlying eye movements and arm movements. This discovery will have implications for the continued development of neural prosthetic devices that translate neural codes for movement plans into actual movements of a robotic limb.

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