Digitally created image of brain in skull

ForeFront

RESEARCH CENTRE

Students

The program aims to provide rigour and excellence in laboratory and clinical research training to the next generation of clinical researchers.

From the laboratory perspective, we will continue to train PhD and honours students through university academic programs, and to mentor postdoctoral researchers to develop into independent scientists. We will disseminate the wide range of experimental techniques and model systems that are used in this program to train the next generation of molecular neuroscientists.

From the clinical perspective, we propose to expand the current personnel by supporting clinical fellows, provide for PhD scholarship stipends, in addition to funding a dedicated clinical research neuropsychologist, occupational therapist, speech pathologist, clinical nurse specialist, exercise physiologist and database manager. As such, the program will train clinical researchers and will facilitate development of career paths that encompass integrated neuroscience and clinical skills. This strategy will ensure an emerging cohort of clinician researchers who can facilitate translation of neuroscience findings into clinical practice and, importantly, optimise public health benefits by disseminating most recent evidence-based practice to community settings. Each clinician researcher will be trained in an interdisciplinary culture, co-supervised by investigators with different areas of expertise, thereby promoting integration of diverse approaches.

Prof Kril has academic expertise in research student training (Assoc Dean, Postgraduate Studies, Sydney Medical School) and will take prime responsibility for developing and overseeing training and mentoring within the program with the remit to substantially grow our capacity in this area.

For more information on how to get involved with either the clinical or laboratory based research please contact jillian.kril@sydney.edu.au.

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Brain and Knee Muscle Weakness Study

Why Does Quadriceps Weakness Persist after Total Knee Replacement? An Exploration of Neurophysiological Mechanisms Total knee replacement is a commonly performed surgery for treating end-staged knee osteoarthritis. Although most people recover well after surgery, weakness of the quadriceps muscles (the front thigh muscles) persists long after the surgery (at least for 12 months), despite intensive physiotherapy and exercise. Quadriceps muscle weakness is known to be associated with more severe pain and greatly affect daily activities. This study aims to investigate the mechanisms underlying weakness of the quadriceps muscles in people with knee osteoarthritis and total knee replacement. We hope to better understand the relationship between the changes of the brain and a loss of quadriceps muscle strength after total knee replacement. The study might be a good fit for you if you: Scheduled to undergo a total knee replacement; The surgery is scheduled within the next 4 weeks; Do not have a previous knee joint replacement in the same knee; Do not have high tibial osteotomy; Do not have neurological disorders, epilepsy, psychiatric conditions, other chronic pain conditions; Do not have metal implants in the skull; Do not have a loss of sensation in the limbs. If you decide to take part you would: Be contacted by the researcher to determine your eligibility for the study Be scheduled for testing if you are eligible and willing to take part in the study Sign the Consent Form when you attend the first testing session Attend 3 testing sessions (approximately 2 hours per session): 1) before total knee replacement, 2) 3 months and 3) 6 months after total knee replacement. The testing will include several non-invasive measures of brain representations of the quadriceps muscles, central pain mechanisms, and motor function and questionnaires. Will I be paid to take part in the research study? You will be reimbursed ($50.00 per session) for travel and parking expenses associated with the research study visits. If you would like more information or are interested in being part of the study, please contact: Name: Dr Wei-Ju Chang Email: w.chang@neura.edu.au Phone: 02 9399 1260 This research is being funded by the Physiotherapy Research Foundation.  
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