View Full Version : Postdoctoral Researcher: Penn State Movement NeuroscienceLaboratory

10-30-2002, 04:54 AM
A Post-doctoral research associate position is available in the Movement
Neuroscience Laboratory at Penn State University.

This position is funded by an NIH Project Grant (R01), entitled, ³Interlimb
Differences in Control of Multijoint Dynamics². The focus of this research
is to discern the neural mechanisms underlying handedness. This manual
asymmetry appears to result from differences in the relative contributions
of each cerebral hemisphere to unilateral limb control. Recent evidence from
our laboratory has suggested that the dominant hemisphere/limb system is
specialized for controlling the effects of intersegmental dynamics to
specify limb trajectory shape and speed (Sainburg,and Kalakanis, 2000;
Sainburg 2002; Bagesteiro and Sainburg, 2002; Sainburg and Wang, 2002).
Interestingly, the non-dominant hemisphere/limb system seems best adapted
for specifying and controlling static limb posture. A recent perturbation
study supported this idea by demonstrating that dominant arm load
compensation mechanisms lead to stabilization of velocity to the detriment
of final position, whereas non-dominant arm load compensation responses lead
to better final position accuracy. The successful applicant will continue
studies along these lines of research, as well as, having the opportunity to
contribute to research along other established lines within the Movement
Neuroscience laboratory. This laboratory is described below.

Position Requirements: Recent PhD in Neuroscience, Biomechanics,
Kinesiology, Biomedical Engineering, Experimental Psychology, or other
discipline focusing on control of human movement. Demonstration of scholarly
progress, in terms of prepared, submitted, or published manuscripts, and
presentations at conferences.

Desired skills include: Psychophysical experimentation experience,
biomechanical skills including inverse dynamic analysis, Experience with
collection and analysis of human movement data, EMG collection and analysis
is desirable, experience with forward simulations is a plus, but not a
requirement; experience with computer programming is a plus: We use the
following programming environments within the laboratory: Visual C++; Visual
Basic; Igor Pro (Wavemetrics Scientific and Engineering package); Matlab.


Please send CV and three References

Robert L. Sainburg, PhD, Department of Kinesiology and Programs in
Neuroscience and Physiology, Pennsylvania State University, 266 REC Bldg,
University Park, Pennsylvania, 16802. (814) 865-7937 rls45@psu.edu

NOTE: I will be attending the Annual Society for Neuroscience Meeting in
Orlando, Florida from November 2nd through the 9th. Anyone, also attending
the meeting, who would like to discuss this position can contact me at my
posters (4 throughout the week), or by leaving a message at the message
center, or by email. I would be happy to discuss the position during the

************************************************** *****************

Movement Neuroscience Laboratory: http://www.personal.psu.edu/rls45

The Movement Neuroscience Laboratory is located within the kinesiology
department at The Pennsylvania State University. Our research program
integrates biomechanical with neurobiological principles and techniques to
elucidate the neural processes underlying the planning and execution of
multi-joint reaching movements. This work is motivated by a commitment to
improve clinical rehabilitation for neurologically impaired individuals.

The Movement Neuroscience Laboratory is equipped with specialized, custom
built hardware for recording arm movement, force/torque, and muscle
activation profiles during the performance of computer game-like tasks. We
have three experimental set-ups, including an air-jet supported friction
free manipulandum, a 6-DOF recording system, and a programmable robot arm
manipulandum to apply forces to the arm during movement.

Our current program is split into three lines of work, focusing on the
neural control of multi-joint reaching movements: 1) The roles of different
sensory modalities in programming and executing reaching movements. 2)
Learning and generalization of performance during practice under novel
dynamic and visuomotor conditions. 3) The neural foundations of handedness.
Handedness provides a natural window into the normal organization of the
motor control system because interlimb differences in coordination appear to
result from neurophysiological, in contrast to, biomechanical asymmetries.
Recent findings from this laboratory indicate that handedness results from
specialized contributions of each cerebral hemisphere to different aspects
of motor control, which is consistent with other limbs of our research
indicating that control of posture and control of movement are regulated
through distinct neural processes. In summary, our research employs an
interdisciplinary approach to studying basic mechanisms of motor control,
and is ultimately directed toward effecting improvements in clinical

Robert L. Sainburg, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Kinesiology, Physiology, and Neuroscience
Pennsylvania State University
266 Recreation Building
University Park PA 16802
Tel.: (814)-865-7937

To unsubscribe send SIGNOFF BIOMCH-L to LISTSERV@nic.surfnet.nl
For information and archives: http://isb.ri.ccf.org/biomch-l