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Can Startle Elicit Sequential Movements in Highly Trained Individuals?

Description

Most daily living tasks consist of pairing a series of sequential movements, e.g., reaching to a cup, grabbing the cup, lifting and returning the cup to your mouth. The process by which we control and mediate the smooth progression of

Most daily living tasks consist of pairing a series of sequential movements, e.g., reaching to a cup, grabbing the cup, lifting and returning the cup to your mouth. The process by which we control and mediate the smooth progression of these tasks is not well understood. One method which we can use to further evaluate these motions is known as Startle Evoked Movements (SEM). SEM is an established technique to probe the motor learning and planning processes by detecting muscle activation of the sternocleidomastoid muscles of the neck prior to 120ms after a startling stimulus is presented. If activation of these muscles was detected following a stimulus in the 120ms window, the movement is classified as Startle+ whereas if no sternocleidomastoid activation is detected after a stimulus in the allotted time the movement is considered Startle-. For a movement to be considered SEM, the activation of movements for Startle+ trials must be faster than the activation of Startle- trials. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect that expertise has on sequential movements as well as determining if startle can distinguish when the consolidation of actions, known as chunking, has occurred. We hypothesized that SEM could distinguish words that were solidified or chunked. Specifically, SEM would be present when expert typists were asked to type a common word but not during uncommon letter combinations. The results from this study indicated that the only word that was susceptible to SEM, where Startle+ trials were initiated faster than Startle-, was an uncommon task "HET" while the common words "AND" and "THE" were not. Additionally, the evaluation of the differences between each keystroke for common and uncommon words showed that Startle was unable to distinguish differences in motor chunking between Startle+ and Startle- trials. Explanations into why these results were observed could be related to hand dominance in expert typists. No proper research has been conducted to evaluate the susceptibility of the non-dominant hand's fingers to SEM, and the results of future studies into this as well as the results from this study can impact our understanding of sequential movements.

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Date Created
2018-05

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Startle can evoke individuated movements of the fingers; implications for neural control

Description

Startle-evoked-movement (SEM), the involuntary release of a planned movement via a startling stimulus, has gained significant attention recently for its ability to probe motor planning as well as enhance movement of the upper extremity following stroke. We recently showed that

Startle-evoked-movement (SEM), the involuntary release of a planned movement via a startling stimulus, has gained significant attention recently for its ability to probe motor planning as well as enhance movement of the upper extremity following stroke. We recently showed that hand movements are susceptible to SEM. Interestingly, only coordinated movements of the hand (grasp) but not individuated movements of the finger (finger abduction) were susceptible. It was suggested that this resulted from different neural mechanisms involved in each task; however it is possible this was the result of task familiarity. The objective of this study was to evaluate a more familiar individuated finger movement, typing, to determine if this task was susceptible to SEM. We hypothesized that typing movements will be susceptible to SEM in all fingers. These results indicate that individuated movements of the fingers are susceptible to SEM when the task involves a more familiar task, since the electromyogram (EMG) latency is faster in SCM+ trials compared to SCM- trials. However, the middle finger does not show a difference in terms of the keystroke voltage signal, suggesting the middle finger is less susceptible to SEM. Given that SEM is thought to be mediated by the brainstem, specifically the reticulospinal tract, this suggest that the brainstem may play a role in movements of the distal limb when those movements are very familiar, and the independence of each finger might also have a significant on the effect of SEM. Further research includes understanding SEM in fingers in the stroke population. The implications of this research can impact the way upper extremity rehabilitation is delivered.

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Date Created
2016-12

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A Diabetes Education Initiative for Citizens of Rural Kenya

Description

Diabetes is a growing epidemic in developing countries, specifically in rural Kenya. In addition to the high cost of glucose testing, many diabetics in Kenya do not understand the importance of testing their blood glucose, let alone the nature of

Diabetes is a growing epidemic in developing countries, specifically in rural Kenya. In addition to the high cost of glucose testing, many diabetics in Kenya do not understand the importance of testing their blood glucose, let alone the nature of the disease. This project addresses the insufficiency of educational materials regarding diabetes in rural Kenya. The resulting documents can easily be adjusted for use in other developing countries.

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Date Created
2014-05

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Multimarker Sensor Development for Intermediate Glycemic Index, A Novel Approach for a Glycated Albumin Sensor

Description

Diabetes mellitus is a disease characterized by many chronic and acute conditions. With the prevalence and cost quickly increasing, we seek to improve on the current standard of care and create a rapid, label free sensor for glycated albumin (GA)

Diabetes mellitus is a disease characterized by many chronic and acute conditions. With the prevalence and cost quickly increasing, we seek to improve on the current standard of care and create a rapid, label free sensor for glycated albumin (GA) index using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The antibody, anti-HA, was fixed to gold electrodes and a sine wave of sweeping frequencies was induced with a range of HA, GA, and GA with HA concentrations. Each frequency in the impedance sweep was analyzed for highest response and R-squared value. The frequency with both factors optimized is specific for both the antibody-antigen binding interactions with HA and GA and was determined to be 1476 Hz and 1.18 Hz respectively in purified solutions. The correlation slope between the impedance response and concentration for albumin (0 \u2014 5400 mg/dL of albumin) was determined to be 72.28 ohm/ln(mg/dL) with an R-square value of 0.89 with a 2.27 lower limit of detection. The correlation slope between the impedance response and concentration for glycated albumin (0 \u2014 108 mg/dL) was determined to be -876.96 ohm/ln(mg/dL) with an R-squared value of 0.70 with a 0.92 mg/dL lower limit of detection (LLD). The above data confirms that EIS offers a new method of GA detection by providing unique correlation with albumin as well as glycated albumin. The unique frequency response of GA and HA allows for modulation of alternating current signals so that several other markers important in the management of diabetes could be measured with a single sensor. Future work will be necessary to establish multimarker sensing on one electrode.

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Date Created
2014-05

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Pyridoxine Wound Healing Trial

Description

The purpose of this study, which was done in conjunction with the Arizona Heart Foundation, was to evaluate whether pyridoxine accelerates ulcer wound healing in diabetic patients with ulcers in the lower extremities. In this study, 100 mg of pyridoxine

The purpose of this study, which was done in conjunction with the Arizona Heart Foundation, was to evaluate whether pyridoxine accelerates ulcer wound healing in diabetic patients with ulcers in the lower extremities. In this study, 100 mg of pyridoxine per day was given to patients in the experimental group (while they receive normal wound treatment) while patients in the control group received normal treatment of wounds without the pyridoxine. Over time, wound healing was evaluated by photographing and then measuring the size of patients' ulcer wounds on the photographs. Results from the experimental group were compared with those of the control group to evaluate the efficacy of the pyridoxine treatment. In addition, comparisons of the healing rates were made with respect to whether the patients smoked, had hypertension or hypotension, and the patients' body mass indexes. It has been found that there was no statistically significant difference in the mean healing rates between the control groups and experimental groups. In addition, it has been found that smoking, BMI and blood pressure did not have a statistically appreciable effect on the difference in mean healing rates between the control and experimental groups. This is evidence that pyridoxine did not have a statistically significant effect on wound healing rates.

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Date Created
2013-05

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Developing an Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy-Based Insulin Sensor

Description

Currently, the management of diabetes mellitus (DM) involves the monitoring of only blood glucose using self-monitoring blood glucose devices (SMBGs) followed by taking interventional steps, if needed. To increase the amount of information that diabetics can have to base DM

Currently, the management of diabetes mellitus (DM) involves the monitoring of only blood glucose using self-monitoring blood glucose devices (SMBGs) followed by taking interventional steps, if needed. To increase the amount of information that diabetics can have to base DM care decisions off of, the development of an insulin biosensor is explored. Such a biosensor incorporates electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) to ensure an extremely sensitive platform. Additionally, anti-insulin antibody was immobilized onto the surface of a gold disk working electrode to ensure a highly specific sensing platform as well. EIS measurements were completed with a 5mV sine wave that was swept through the frequency spectrum of 100 kHz to 1 Hz on concentrations of insulin ranging from 0 pM to 100 μM. The frequency at which the interaction between insulin and its antibody was optimized was determined by finding out at which frequency the R2 and slope of the impedance-concentration plot were best. This frequency, otherwise known as the optimal binding frequency, was determined to be 459 Hz. Three separate electrodes were developed and the impedance data for each concentration measured at 459 Hz was averaged and plotted against the LOG (pM insulin) to construct the calibration curve. The response was calculated to be 263.64 ohms/LOG(pM insulin) with an R2 value of 0.89. Additionally, the average RSD was determined to be 19.24% and the LLD was calculated to be 8.47 pM, which is well below the physiological normal range. These results highlight the potential success of developing commercial point-of-care insulin biosensors or multi-marker devices operating with integrated insulin detection.

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Date Created
2013-05

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Deep Learning Application to Improve Quality of Life in Diabetes

Description

Carbohydrate counting has been shown to improve HbA1c levels for people with diabetes. However, the learning curve and inconvenience of carbohydrate counting make it difficult for patients to adhere to it. A deep learning model is proposed to identify food

Carbohydrate counting has been shown to improve HbA1c levels for people with diabetes. However, the learning curve and inconvenience of carbohydrate counting make it difficult for patients to adhere to it. A deep learning model is proposed to identify food from an image, where it can help the user manage their carbohydrate counting. This early model has a 68.3% accuracy of identifying 101 different food classes. A more refined model in future work could be deployed into a mobile application to identify food the user is about to consume and log it for easier carbohydrate counting.

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Date Created
2021-05

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Startle-evoked movement in multi-jointed, two-dimensional reaching tasks

Description

Previous research has shown that a loud acoustic stimulus can trigger an individual's prepared movement plan. This movement response is referred to as a startle-evoked movement (SEM). SEM has been observed in the stroke survivor population where results have shown

Previous research has shown that a loud acoustic stimulus can trigger an individual's prepared movement plan. This movement response is referred to as a startle-evoked movement (SEM). SEM has been observed in the stroke survivor population where results have shown that SEM enhances single joint movements that are usually performed with difficulty. While the presence of SEM in the stroke survivor population advances scientific understanding of movement capabilities following a stroke, published studies using the SEM phenomenon only examined one joint. The ability of SEM to generate multi-jointed movements is understudied and consequently limits SEM as a potential therapy tool. In order to apply SEM as a therapy tool however, the biomechanics of the arm in multi-jointed movement planning and execution must be better understood. Thus, the objective of our study was to evaluate if SEM could elicit multi-joint reaching movements that were accurate in an unrestrained, two-dimensional workspace. Data was collected from ten subjects with no previous neck, arm, or brain injury. Each subject performed a reaching task to five Targets that were equally spaced in a semi-circle to create a two-dimensional workspace. The subject reached to each Target following a sequence of two non-startling acoustic stimuli cues: "Get Ready" and "Go". A loud acoustic stimuli was randomly substituted for the "Go" cue. We hypothesized that SEM is accessible and accurate for unrestricted multi-jointed reaching tasks in a functional workspace and is therefore independent of movement direction. Our results found that SEM is possible in all five Target directions. The probability of evoking SEM and the movement kinematics (i.e. total movement time, linear deviation, average velocity) to each Target are not statistically different. Thus, we conclude that SEM is possible in a functional workspace and is not dependent on where arm stability is maximized. Moreover, coordinated preparation and storage of a multi-jointed movement is indeed possible.

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Date Created
2016-12