PERFORM Colloquium: Understanding the cortical control of balance and vestibular function using functional near infrared spectroscopy
Dr. Sparto will discuss his group’s efforts to understand cortical control of balance using non-invasive functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), in healthy adolescents, young and older adults, as well as in people who have vestibular dysfunction or concussion. The tasks that have been examined including sensory organization and optic flow balance tasks, and rotational chair and caloric vestibular function testing.
Attendees will be able to:
- Describe the use of non-invasive near infrared spectroscopy as a neuroimaging modality for understanding the cortical control of balance and vestibular function during upright tasks
- Explain changes in cortical activation that occur during balance and vestibular testing in healthy subjects and individuals with vestibular dysfunction and concussion, and compare function among these groups
Patrick Sparto is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Physical Therapy, Otolaryngology and Bioengineering. Dr. Sparto received his PhD degree in Biomedical Engineering (with an emphasis in Biomechanics) from the Ohio State University in 1998 and his PT degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1999. He has been a faculty member at the University of Pittsburgh since 2000. He is the founding Co-Director of Doctor of Physical Therapy-PhD in Bioengineering program. Dr. Sparto is interested in understanding postural control in older adults, individuals with vestibular disease, and adolescents with sport-related concussion, using neuroimaging and biomechanical methods. Dr. Sparto has published over 80 refereed articles and his research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, and US Department of Defense.