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P01 Sandro Fioretti / Tommaso Leo
02-02-1995, 04:27 AM
Dear BIOMCH-L subscriber,

This is a call for European researchers interested
in a CEC initiative within the CAMARN project.

WHAT IS CAMARN

The acronym CAMARN stands for: Computer Aided
Movement Analysis Research Network. This is a
project funded by the Commission of the European
Communities within the Human Capital and Mobility
programme adopted by the Council of Ministers of
the European Communities (CEC DG XII).

It is running from January 1994 and will end on
December 1996.


GOALS AND OBJECTIVES OF CAMARN

The aim of the CAMARN project is the creation of
a network of Movement Analysis (MA) laboratories
able to educate a number of young researchers in
the field of Functional Evaluation of the motor
disabled and the elderly.
The final expected results from the project consist
in the availability of a relatively large number of
new researchers that will be well aware of the
potentialities of the concerted and standardised MA
, thus contributing to improve the efficiency and
efficacy of Health Care in Rehabilitation through the
application of the most recent technological
resources in the field of functional evaluation of
motor disabled and elderly.
Accordingly, the objectives of CAMARN refer to
research training in number of fields relevant to
MA such as:
- Digital Signal Processing: for data acquisition
and elaboration;
- Computer Science: for friendly interfaces
towards various kinds of users, data base
management and interrogation, computer
networks, artificial intelligence applications such
as knowledge acquisition and formalization and
expert systems;
- Measurement systems: for classical MA
experiments in laboratory, for Long Term
Monitoring, for monitoring the Activities of Daily
Living and for the development of new
instrumentation for MA
- Clinical evaluation (by means of concerted
protocols and standardised methods).

LABORATORIES PARTICIPATING IN CAMARN

The laboratories that participate in the CAMARN
network can be characterized in the following
manner:

- Clinical (mainly) laboratories:
- Roessingh Research and Development,
Enschede, The Netherlands (Dr. H. Hermens)
- Department of Physiotherapy, University College,
Dublin, Ireland (Dr. M. Garrett)

- Technical (mainly) laboratories:
- Department of Electronics and Automatics,
University of Ancona, Italy (Prof. T. Leo)
- Laboratory of Biomedical Kinanthropology,
Catholic University, Leuven, Belgium (Prof. A.
Spaepen)
- Department of Medical Informatics and Image
Analysis, University of Aalborg, Denmark (Prof. T.
Sinkjaer)
- Institute for Biomechanics, German Sports
University, Koln, Germany (Prof. W. Baumann)

- Technical and Clinical laboratories:
- Bioengineering Unit, University of Strathclyde,
Glasgow, UK (Prof. J.P. Paul)
- INSERM Unite 103, Montpellier, France (Prof. P.
Rabischong)



WHO ARE THE RESEARCHERS THAT CAN
APPLY FOR CAMARN FUNDS ?

Researchers who can receive a financial
contribution from CAMARN are post-doc or post-
graduate researchers from any Country belonging
to the European Union.
The researchers who take part to the project will
have the opportunity to work in an already existing
european scientific community sensitive to the
themes of standardisation of methods and
concertartion of protocols for facing the many, and
still open problems of Motor Rehabilitation.
>From the viewpoint of the training methods, all the
laboratories involved in the network for practical
and theoretical co-operation, have expertise both in
the engineering field and in clinical application. In
this manner, a researcher visiting one of these
laboratories for a suitable period of time (at least
three months) can develop both technical and
clinical related competence, and moreover can be
supported by the already experienced concertation
among all the participating laboratories.


RESEARCH THEMES AT THE VARIOUS
LABORATORIES

In the following, a list of possible research themes
available at the various laboratories is appended.
Post-doc or post-graduate researchers interested
in a theme among those reported in the above
cited list can contact the responsible person of the
specific laboratory.
The responsible of each CAMARN laboratory has
provided the description of the research themes
relevant for his/her research group.

Here is the list of addresses of the various contact
persons:

Prof. Tommaso LEO: Universita' di Ancona,
Dipartimento di Elettronica ed Automatica, via
Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona - Italy, Tel: +39
71 2204842 Fax: +39 71 2804334

Dr. Mary GARRETT: University College Dublin,
School of Physiotherapy, Movement Analysis
Laboratory, Mater Hospital, Eccles Street,
Dublin 7, Ireland, Tel: +353 1 8304533, Fax:
+353 1 8303550

Dr. Hermanus J. HERMENS: Rehabilitation Centre
"Het Roessingh", Roessingh Research and
Development, Laboratorium B.V., P.O. Box 310,
7500 Enschede, Netherlands, Tel: +31 53
875875 Fax: +31 53 340849

Prof. Arthur SPAEPEN: Katholieke Universiteit
Leuven, Instituut voor Lichamelijcke Opleiding,
Lab. for Occupational Biomechanics,
Tervuursevest 101, 3001 Leuven (Heverlee)
Belgium, Tel: +32 16 201431 Fax: +32 16
291977

Prof. Thomas SINKJAER: Aalborg
Universitetscenter, Dept. of Medical Informatics
and Image Analysis, Inst. of Electronic Systems,
Fr. Bajers N-Vej 7D, 9220 Aalborg East,
Denmark, Tel: +45 98 158522, Fax: +45 98
154008

Prof. Wolfgang BAUMANN: Deutsche
Sporthochschule Koln, Institut fuer
Biomechanik, Carl-Diem-Weg 6, 50933 Koeln,
Germany, Tel: +49 221 4982565, Fax: +49 221
4971598

Prof. John P. PAUL: University of Strathclyde,
Bioengineering Unit, Rottenrow 106, G4 ONW
Glasgow, United Kingdom, Tel: +44 141
5524400, Fax: +44 141 5526098

Prof. Pierre RABISCHONG: INSERM Unite' 103
Appareil Moteur et Handicap, Avenue des
Moulins 395, 34090 Montpellier, France, Tel:
+33 67 632748, Fax: +33 67 542729


EVALUATION OF RESULTS

Each researcher under training will be involved in
the production of a usable tool (hardware, software
or protocol) within the host laboratory. In general,
all these activities will be submitted to peer review
through submissions to relevant scientific journals
and/or scientific congresses. Moreover, during the
course of the project, a workshop will be organized
each year to allow mutual assessment of the work.


I hope that this initiative will encourage numbers of
Movement Analysis students to ask for further
information and apply for a specific research
theme. Due to funds limitation only a limited and
selected number will have the opportunity to be
hosted in a CAMARN laboratory.


Tommaso Leo
CAMARN Project coordinator




PROVISIONAL LIST OF RESEARCH THEMES
FOR CAMARN NETWORK

This list is the collection of the research themes
that each responsible of CAMARN laboratory has
given for his/her own lab.

Ancona University, Ancona, Italy
1) Movement Analysis Methods and Techniques
1.1) Signal processing
1.2) Assessment of reliability of Measurement
systems
1.3) Biomechanical modelling
2) User Friendly Interfaces
2.1) Biosignal representation and interpretation
2.2) Integration of different information
(multimedia)
3) Motor Control Understanding
3.1) Experimental protocols for motor control
understanding
3.2) Modelling and Identification methods and
techniques.
The laboratory has the following equipment:
- Actually, one Costel stereometric system; in the
near future, two stereometric units will be
available
- 2 Bertec force platforms
- 1 triangular extensimetric platform
- 1 four-channel surface EMG system (by DEM -
Leini' - Torino)
- 1 Panasonic video camera connected to a 486 PC
by a Smart Video Recorder card
- Four 486 PCs: two PC's are connected to
Internet.
- HP 712/80 workstation connected to Internet. It is
one of the CAMARC-II servers



INSERM U103, Montpellier, France
1) Ambulatory analysis of dailylife activity
1.1) tasks feature extraction
1.2) tasks recognition (from Neural Net Based
Classification systems)
2) Characterisation of Hemiplegic Motor
Capabilities
2.1) implementation of kinematic and kinetic
analysis methods
2.2) definition of relevant parameters
3) Design and implementation of new gait
assessment Hardware and Software tools

University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland
1) Specification of phases of functional electrical
stimulation (FES) applied to leg and trunk
muscles of paraplegic patients to allow walking in
association with a novel reciprocating gait
orthosis. This project will involve the use of a
movement analysis system in association with
goniometers and force transducers.
2) Determination of the load actions transmitted by
leg prostheses of modern "energy storing"
design. The data is required for formulation of
International and European Standards for testing
of leg prostheses. The project will involve data
acquisition by a VICON movement analysis
system and 3 Kistler force platforms in
association with a six quantity load transducer
incorporated in the structure of the prosthesis.
3) Analysis of the inter-segment load actions
developed in the leg of normal subjects while
undertaking walking in circular arcs and also in
side stepping while carrying loads. Data will be
acquired using VICON motion analysis
equipment and Kistler force platforms. The
effects of the gravity and inertial load actions on
leg segments will be assessed.
The unit has the following equipment:
- 6 camera Vicon MA system
- 3 Kistler force platforms
- custom made force and moment transducers for
prosthetic and orthotic load measurements
- EMG, ambulatory monitoring, and metabolic
energy measurement equipment.


University College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
The overall objective of research being carried out
in the UCD school of Physiotherapy is the
improvement of rehabilitation services offered to
the motor disabled and other types of patients.
Research is being carried out in six different areas.
1) Gait analysis and the study of reflex control of
walking in both normal people and people following
a cerebro-vascular accident.
2) The development of objective measures of motor
handicap which may be of prognostic value in the
stroke patient.
3) Cardiorespiratory endurance and isokinetic
muscle strength testing in growth hormone and
other patients.
4) The development of a Functional Walking
Handicap Scale.
5) The value of Physiotherapy in the diabetic foot.
6) A study of factors which influence mobility in
increasing age, with a view to developing a Mobility
Prevision Scale.

The aforementioned research is being conducted in
conjunction with the consultants in the Mather
Hospital in Dublin, Ireland. Items 1, 2, 4 and 6
provide contribution to the EC AIM Project
CAMARC-II.
The Electronic Engineering Department in UCD
works in conjunction with the National Medical
Rehabilitation Centre in Dun Laoghaire, County
Dublin, in the development of functional electrical
stimulation systems with a view to improving the
rehabilitation of a motor disabled.

Roessingh Research and Development,
Enschede, The Netherlands
1) Reliability of body segment rotation kinematics
2) Assessment of efficiency of gait using
accelerometers
3) Selectivity of different EMG electrode
configurations, cross-talk
4) Inter rater reliability EAEP's
5) Separation of co-contraction and co-spasticity
6) Maximum number of strides for EAEP's
7) Error analysis of video ground reaction
visualization

Institute for Biomechanics, German Sports
University, Koln, Germany

1) Movement analysis
Data acquisition and processing
Modeling of lower extremity
Determination of internal loads

Methods:
Math. Optimisation procedures
Kistler force platforms
Selspot II - system

2) Analysis of balancing (regulation of equilibrium)
Improvement of measuring/testing devices
Analysis of sport-specific motor activities
Identification of talents

Methods:
Kistler force platforms
Selspot II - system
Fscan - system (in-shoe pressure distribution).

3) Physiological and patological interactions of foot
and shoe
Standards of pressure distribution in different
activities
Material tests of shoe material
Complex shoe tests
Biomechanics of the diabetic foot

Methods:
Pneumatic impacters
Complex movement analysis (Kistler and
Selspot)
Fscan-system
Questionnaires.

Dept. Biomedical Kinantropology, Katholieke
Universiteit Leuven, Belgium

The laboratory of ergonomics at the Faculty of
Physical Education and Physiotherapy is
characterized by a multidisciplinary approach
towards the development and application of 3D-
movement analysis systems, Force Plate and
(surface) EMG. In this respect, the interest in
technical specifications of the equipment and
device development is combined with the
application of these techniques in the field of
ergonomics and in the clinical context.

The laboratory is equipped with:
- 1 Kinemetrix system (automatic stereometric data
acquisition system)
- Video-systems for tape recording and
measurement off-line
- 1 Bertec Force Platform
- Several sets of 8 channel EMG amplifiers (direct
and telemetry systems), commercially available
or self developed
- Ergodyn device for computer aided isokinetic
analysis of joint function
- Eye Gaze system
- Computer facilities: NOVEL network with 20 PC, 1
Sun Workstation

A brief description of different research projects
each of them using one or more of the above
mentioned registration techniques:
1. One of the research projects is involved in
occupational biomechanics analysis, in which
overload risks from repetitive strain injuries and
load on back are studied, using 3D movement
registration in combination with force and EMG
registration. In this respect, the influence of
muscle fatigue on EMG charachteristics during
submaximal contractions is studied extensively.
2. The mechanical efficiency of wheelchair
propulsion is studied by the integrated study of
EMG characteristics of upper limb muscles,
movement analysis and physiological parameters
during exercise. The results of this fundamental
study will be used in the evaluation of wheelchair
athletes.
3. Integrated 3D-movement analysis systems,
telemetric EMG and force platform are used in
studies of therapeutic management in clinical
groups. At present the influence of therapeutic
bandaging on walking performance on the stroke
patient is studied. Also a protocol for the
evaluation of orthotic devices in Stroke Patients
is under development. In MS-patients, the
influence of electrostimulation on lower limb
spasticity is studied.
4. From the experience in the above mentioned
areas of research the need for multimedia
presentation of the movement analysis results
was expressed. Therefore, in cooperation with a
German company, our laboratory is exploring the
present possibilities for combined and
synchronized display of movement analysis
results and video images.
5. Within the european project RACE, alternative
communication for severely handicapped
persons are studied. The application of trackball
and eye-gaze for alternative communication
within a multimedia context is studied in control
and handicapped subjects.
6. The study of Force Plate characteristics is part of
ongoing studies. For this reason a calibration
stand was developed for static calibration. In the
future the issue of dynamic calibration will be
studied.
7. Also, the study of the relation between surface
EMG and force production in healthy persons
and stroke patients, is studied. A computer
model describing the electomechanical
functioning of the skeletal muscle is under
development. Also the use of neural network
techniques in the study of the relation Force-
EMG is evaluated.
8. In cooperation with the engineering department
(ESAT-MICAS) a new telemetric EMG devices is
under developmentusing a bidirectional
telemetric link based on radiowave transmission.


Dept. of Medical Informatics and Image
Analysis,
University of Aalborg, Denmark

1) Development of a multichannel nerve recording
cuff
2) Analysis of Electro-Neuro-Gram (ENG) signals
to provide information about friction between
glabrous skin and surfaces of different textures
3) Development of Advanced Techniques to
provide sensory feedback from artificial limbs

Project 1: Development of a multichannel nerve
recording cuff
Rationale:
While nerve recording cuffs have been
demonstrated to provide safe, reliable signals from
sensory nerves, a drawback is that there is poor
specificity regarding the physical location of the
events that evoked the recorded activity.
For example, when activity is recorded from a
digital cutaneous nerve, it is not apparent from
which area of the finger the activity arose, as this
could have been anywhere within the innervation
territory of that nerve distal to the cuff placement.
An improvement would result if separate fascicles
within a multifascicle nerve could be recorded from
independently, since the innervation territories of
the separate fascicles would each be smaller in
area than for the composite nerve.

Approach:
A multichannel nerve cuff will be placed on the
sciatic nerve in in an anesthetized rabbit or other
suitable animal. Separate stimulating cuff
electrodes or hook electrodes will be applied to at
least three nerves of the hindlimb that contribute to
the sciatic nerve. For example, these could be the
tibial nerve, peroneal nerve and sural nerve. Each
of these peripheral nerves will be stimulated
individually, and the evoked responses separately
recorded and compared from each channel of the
multichannel recording cuff. A selectivity index will
need to be developed to allow the performance of
various cuff geometries and electrode
configurations to be assessed. A cuff design that
would be particularly useful for these experiments
would be fashioned using thin film deposition of
noble metals on a flexible and biocompatible
substrate. A technique to mark the orientation of
the cuff relative to the underlying nerve fascicles
will need to be specified or developed so that
histological verification of the relative positions of
the electrode elements and the identified fascicles
can be performed.

Scope:
The experiments may be carried over to additional
larger nerves in the pig if desired. Also, chronic
studies in the rabbit may be useful to determine the
stability of the interface. The studies could be
expanded to include modeling of the recording
characteristics.

Project 2: Analysis of ENG signals to provide
information about friction between glabrous skin
and surfaces of different textures

Rationale:
Closed loop control algorithms can improve the
performance of Neuroprostheses to restore hand
grasp in individuals with spinal injury. Slippage
signals are readily obtained from ENG recorded
from cutaneous nerves. It would be useful to
incorporate adjustments to surface friction into the
control algorithms if such information could be
obtained.

Approach:
Data will be provided from nerve recordings in
human subjects when surfaces of different texture
and friction are grasped and slid over the skin.
Advanced analysis techniques such as the use of
neural networks may be useful.

Scope:
After determining if information about friction can
be obtained, algorithms to transduce the
information from ENG in real time may be
developed and tested in an individual who is using
a hand grasp neuroprostheses under closed loop
control. Aspects of the closed loop controller will be
furnished by collaborating investigators.

Project 3: Development of Advanced Techniques to
provide sensory feedback from artificial limbs

Rationale:
A present obstacle to providing more function to
the users of artificial limbs is the lack of sensory
feedback from these devices. Prior reports from
laboratory based studies in this area have
demonstrated that even rudimentary information
such as object-finger contact and grasp force
magnitude in the case of myoelectric arms for
example, can increase the user acceptance of the
prosthesis. Previous approaches have involved
using electrocutaneous feedback or the application
of electrical stimulation to sensory nerve trunks, but
these have precluded the ability to target the
stimulation to specific identified sensory afferent
nerve fibers. As a result, the evoked percepts fail to
be discretely localized and do not have modality
specific qualities. These deficiences can be
overcome by applying microstimulation to the
sensory nerves. Using microstimulation,
investigators have demonstrated that discrete
modalities of tactile sensations such as light touch,
sustained pressure, tickle and vibration can be
elicited.

Approach:
A multichannel nerve interface is to be developed
that will provide for microstimulation of discrete
sensory afferents. An electrode array
micromachined from silicon will be evaluated in an
animal model of an amputated sensory nerve.
Electrophysiological, behavioral and histological
techniques will be used to demonstrate the efficacy
of the interface over several months post
implantation. When a suitable inteface is identified,
it will be implanted into a volunteer upper extremity
amputee subject. Psychophysical testing will be
performed to develop suitable coding algorithms
which can be used to reproduce or communicate
tactile events that mimic natural "feeling"
sensations.

Scope:
This project is multifaceted. Students are sought
who have interests in one or more of the following
areas: electrophysiology of nerves; psychophysics;
man-machine interface and instrumentation
regarding the application of force and other
sensors to a commercial myoelectric hand; the
development of a nerve interface; computer
software development to support this project; and
neuroprostheses in general.



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