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  • Functional Neurosurgery Laboratory

    The goal of functional neurosurgery research in the Functional Neurosurgery Laboratory is to develop models to understand how brain function is affected by conditions like epilepsy and Parkinson's disease, and how this abnormal function might be corrected or minimized by neuromodulation through electrical stimulation.

    There is a limited window of time to collect information about abnormal brain function from recordings in the operating room or Epilepsy Monitoring Unit. The data that is collected, however, can be used to construct models of brain function in patients with epilepsy or Parkinson's disease. These models can be manipulated to explore functional changes and treatment possibilities.

    The FNL uses computational modeling of epilepsy as a method to understand how seizures develop, and how and where they spread in the brain. The modeling methods include large arrays of single compartment models and multi-compartment simulations of neurons to allow researchers to observe ele...ctrophysiological activity in the brain.

    Other projects include the development of a neuromodulation system that applies stimulation pulses at specific phases of brain oscillatory activity. This may be useful for the treatment of Parkinson's disease and memory disorders.
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    Research Areas: epilepsy, movement disorders, Parkinson's disease, computational modeling, Functional neurosurgery

  • Kechen Zhang Laboratory

    The research in the Kecken Zhang Laboratory is focused on theoretical and computational neuroscience. We use mathematical analysis and computer simulations to study the nervous system at multiple levels, from realistic biophysical models to simplified neuronal networks. Several of our current research projects involve close collaborations with experimental neuroscience laboratories.

    Research Areas: biophysics, neuroscience, neuronal networks, nervous system

    Lab Website

    Principal Investigator

    Kechen Zhang, Ph.D.

    Department

    Biomedical Engineering

  • Michael A. Rosen Lab

    Research in the Michael A. Rosen Lab primarily focuses on patient safety and simulation-based health care training and technology. Recent work provided examples of how human factors experts can collaborate with health care professionals and simulationists (experts in the design and implementation of simulation) to use contemporary simulation to improve health care delivery. Another recent study examined the anesthesia practice at two tertiary care hospitals in Sierra Leone, West Africa, where anesthesia is associated with high mortality rates. We identified gaps in the application of internationally recommended anesthesia practices at both hospitals, likely caused by lack of available resources.

    Research Areas: simulations, patient safety, quality improvement, anesthesia, quality of care

  • Nicole Shilkofski Lab

    Work in the Nicole Shilkofski Lab aims to improve patient safety in critical care settings, with a focus on resuscitation scenarios. Our research is conducted as part of the research group of the Johns Hopkins Medical Simulation Center. We investigate the communication and functionality of teams during medical crisis situations. As part of those efforts, we are designing a web-based curriculum to teach pediatric resuscitation through mannequin simulation and computer-based simulation techniques.

    Research Areas: critical care medicine, simulations, patient safety, quality improvement, educational technology

  • O'Rourke Lab

    The O’Rourke Lab uses an integrated approach to study the biophysics and physiology of cardiac cells in normal and diseased states.

    Research in our lab has incorporated mitochondrial energetics, Ca2+ dynamics, and electrophysiology to provide tools for studying how defective function of one component of the cell can lead to catastrophic effects on whole cell and whole organ function. By understanding the links between Ca2+, electrical excitability and energy production, we hope to understand the cellular basis of cardiac arrhythmias, ischemia-reperfusion injury, and sudden death.

    We use state-of-the-art techniques, including single-channel and whole-cell patch clamp, microfluorimetry, conventional and two-photon fluorescence imaging, and molecular biology to study the structure and function of single proteins to the intact muscle. Experimental results are compared with simulations of computational models in order to understand the findings in the context of the system as a whole....

    Ongoing studies in our lab are focused on identifying the specific molecular targets modified by oxidative or ischemic stress and how they affect mitochondrial and whole heart function.

    The motivation for all of the work is to understand
    • how the molecular details of the heart cell work together to maintain function and
    • how the synchronization of the parts can go wrong

    Rational strategies can then be devised to correct dysfunction during the progression of disease through a comprehensive understanding of basic mechanisms.

    Brian O’Rourke, PhD, is a professor in the Division of Cardiology and Vice Chair of Basic and Translational Research, Department of Medicine, at the Johns Hopkins University.
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    Research Areas: biophysics, ischemia-reperfusion injury, imaging, electrophysiology, cardiovascular, arrhythmia, physiology, sudden cardiac death, molecular biology, cardiac cells

    Lab Website

    Principal Investigator

    Brian O'Rourke, Ph.D.

    Department

    Medicine

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