Research

In our laboratory, we innovate, develop and test new neurotechnologies and apply them to basic and clinical research. Thus, we produce neuroscientific, engineering, and translational contributions. The major areas of our work are listed below.

Basic Research

  • Attention and Intention

    In a series of studies funded by the US Army Research Office, we are investigating the neural basis of directional orientation, i.e., how people attend to different parts of the visual or auditory scenery, or how they intend to engage in movements in a particular direction. Our results to date demonstrate that particular neural signals encode attentional or intentional engagement, the direction of attended visual or auditory stimuli, and the direction of intended movements.


  • Auditory and Language Function

    In a series of studies, we are investigating the neural basis of auditory and language function. Our initial work used signals recorded from the surface of the brain (electrocorticography (ECoG)) to characterize the neural correlates of auditory and language functions in high detail. Our more recent work is beginning to shed light on the mechanistic principles that underlie these functions.


  • Motor Function

    In a series of studies, we are investigating the neural basis of motor movements. In these studies, we were first to demonstrate that the direction of hand movements can be accurately decoded using signals recorded from the surface of the brain (electrocorticography (ECoG)) in humans. We were also first to show -- using any type of brain signal acquisition method and in any species -- that ECoG signals accurately reflect whether a finger is flexed, which finger is flexed, and the particular time course of the finger flexion.


Engineering

  • BCI2000

    BCI2000 is a general-purpose software system for brain-computer interface (BCI) research that has been in development in a collaborative project led by our laboratory since 2000. It can also be used for data acquisition, stimulus presentation, and brain monitoring applications. The mission of the BCI2000 project is to facilitate research and applications in the areas described above. Our vision is that BCI2000 will continue to grow as a widely used software tool for diverse areas of real-time biosignal processing. The BCI2000 system is available for free for non-profit research and educational purposes.


  • Downloads

    Our laboratory uses many tools, developed in-house or externally, for a variety of purposes. Some of the tools we have developed may be of interest to you or your organization. These downloads are available for free for non-profit research and educational purposes.


Translational Research

  • Brain-Computer Interfacing

    A brain-computer interface (BCI) is a system that measured brain activity and converts it into artificial output that replaces, restores, enhances, supplements, or improves natural brain output (Wolpaw, 2011). As an example, a BCI may use brain signals to allow people with or without disabilities to communicate directly with their brain signals, i.e., without using muscles. In a series of studies, we were first to demonstrate that signals recorded from the surface of the brain (electrocorticography (ECoG)) can support accurate one- and two-dimensional control of a computer cursor with little training, as well as rapid spelling at more than 20 characters per minute.


  • Functional Brain Mapping

    Planning for epilepsy surgery depends substantially on the delineation of epileptic foci, and on the creation of a functional map of eloquent cortex. Traditionally, different methodologies have been used to produce this functional map, but all these methods have substantial problems. Over the past several years, we have been developing a novel passive functional mapping technique, and validated it by comparing its results to those of existing techniques.


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