Topic:

Motor tasks are achieved by activating an appropriate set of muscles depending on the task constraints of a specific movement. The central nervous system (CNS) plays the main role in motor control since it activates each muscle choosing both the magnitude and the timing of the activation. The organization of the CNS in controlling and coordinating a large number of muscles during different motor tasks still represents an open issue in the field of motor control. In the last years, the muscle synergy theory was proposed for the assessment of the modular organization of the CNS during different motor tasks. According to this theory, the CNS control a small number of muscles rather than coordinating every single muscle that is involved in a specific motor task. This research line is focused on the assessment of the modular organization of the CNS during postural balance, locomotion or more complex motor tasks, both in physiological and pathological conditions, by means of muscle synergy extraction. This can have important applications in clinics, robotics and sport science.

People:

  • Marco Ghislieri (Research Assistant)
  • Valentina Agostini (Associate Professor)
  • Marco Knaflitz (Full Professor)
  • Collaborators:

  • Prof. Michele Rosario Maria Lanotte - Department of Neuroscience “Rita Levi Montalcini”, University of Turin, Torino, Italy
  • Dr. Laura Rizzi - Department of Neuroscience “Rita Levi Montalcini”, University of Turin, Torino, Italy
  • Prof. Maria Grazia Benedetti - Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Unit (IRCCS), Istituto Ortopedico Rizzoli, Bologna, Italy
  • Dr. Luciana Labanca - Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Unit (IRCCS), Istituto Ortopedico Rizzoli, Bologna, Italy
  • Dr. Laura Bragonzoni - Department for Life Quality Studies of the University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy
  • Dr. Giuseppe Barone - Department for Life Quality Studies of the University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy

  • Recent publications:

  • Muscle synergies extracted using principal activations: improvement of robustness and interpretability
      M. Ghislieri, V. Agostini, and M. Knaflitz
      IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering
      10.1109/TNSRE.2020.2965179
  • How to improve robustness in muscle synergy extraction
      M. Ghislieri, V. Agostini, and M. Knaflitz
      2019 41st Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC)
      10.1109/EMBC.2019.8856438
  • Muscle Synergy Assessment During Single-Leg Stance
      M. Ghislieri, M. Knaflitz, L. Labanca, G. Barone, L. Bragonzoni, M. G. Benedetti, and V. Agostini
      IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering
      10.1109/TNSRE.2020.3030847
  • An Algorithm for Choosing the Optimal Number of Muscle Synergies during Walking
      R. Ballarini, M. Ghislieri, M. Knaflitz and V. Agostini
      Sensors
      10.3390/s21103311