Jay Alberts, Ph.D.

The Edward F. and Barbara A. Bell Family Endowed Chair

Lerner Research Institute
9500 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44195
Phone: (216) 445-3222
Fax: (216) 444-9198

The aim of my research is to understand structure-function relationships within the central nervous system and the upper extremity. In particular, my research is focused on determining how grasping forces and torques are controlled and coordinated during functional dexterous manipulations. Investigation of movement patterns produced by different patient groups and healthy adults provides a window into the brain with respect to the control of voluntary movement. Our current studies work with Parkinson’s disease (PD) patients to determine the role of the basal ganglia in movement control. Recently, we have shown that unilateral deep brain stimulation provides long-term bilateral motor benefits. We are also evaluating the effects of assisted and voluntary exercise on PD motor function. These studies suggest that assisted exercise increases activation patterns within the brain. The objective and quantitative assessment of motor function will aid in disease diagnostic capability and specificity, disease progression and intervention efficacy for patients in which movement is compromised.

In other words ...

Our laboratory is focused on understanding how the brain controls skilled movements and how changes in brain function affect the movement performance. Our first step is to understand how diseases or conditions such as Parkinson's disease, stroke or concussion affect movement and thinking. Once we identify the specific problems associated with these conditions, we then develop and test interventions or ways of monitoring that are aimed at improving movement and cognitive performance.  Our interventions range from deep brain stimulation (inserting an electrode in the brain) to exercise.

Raquel  Assal
Raquel Assal
Admin Program Coordinator
Phone:(216) 636-2284
Elise  Baron  B.S.
Elise Baron B.S.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Phone:(216) 445-3866
Andrew  Bazyk
Andrew Bazyk
Research Engineer
Phone:(216) 445-3866
Stacey  Clemence
Stacey Clemence
Project Manager III
Phone:(216) 445-3866
A. Elizabeth  Jansen  B.A.
A. Elizabeth Jansen B.A.
Project Manager II
Phone:(216) 445-3866
Mandy  Koop  PhD
Mandy Koop PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow
Phone:(216) 465-3468
Susan   Linder  PT, DPT, MHS, NCS
Susan Linder PT, DPT, MHS, NCS
Project Staff
Phone:(216) 445-9815
Amanda  Penko  M.A.
Amanda Penko M.A.
Exercise Physiologist
Phone:(216) 636-9717
David  Schindler  BS
David Schindler BS
Project Manager IV
Phone:(216) 445-3866

Alberts, J.L., Voelcker-Rehage C., Hallahan, K., Vitek, M., Bamzai, R., and Vitek, J.L. (2008) Bilateral subthalamic stimulation impairs cognitive-motor performance in Parkinson’s disease patients. Brain, 131(12)3348-60.

Ridgel, A., Thota, A., Vitek, J.L. and Alberts, J.L. (2009)  Forced, not voluntary, exercise improves motor function in Parkinson’s disease patients. Journal of Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, PMID: 19131578.

Mera, T.O., Johnson, M.D., Rothe, D., Zhang, J., Xu, W., Ghosh, D., Vitek, J.L., and Alberts, J.L. (2009) Quantifying Rigidity in MPTP-treated Primates. Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 177(1):20-9.

Alberts, J.L., Hallahan, K., Thota, A., Noecker, A.M., Vitek, J.L. and McIntyre, C.M. Reducing cognitive-motor declines associated with bilateral subthalamic deep brain stimulation through computational modeling in a Parkinson’s patient. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry.

US Patent Patent Title Issue Date First-Named Inventor
8,608,622 Systems and Methods for Improving Motor Function with Assisted Exercise 12/17/2013 Jay Alberts Ph.D.
8,562,488 Systems and Methods for Improving Motor Function with Assisted Exercise 10/22/2013 Jay Alberts Ph.D.