Prof. Friedhelm Hummel

Friedhelm Hummel

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Defitech Chair of Clinical Neuroengineering
Unité du Prof Hummel

Our research is focused on neurological disorders leading to long-term impairment, such as stroke, which are very frequent worldwide (e.g., in Europe 3.7 Mio suffer from long-term deficits of stroke). Stroke is currently defined as the epidemic of the 21st century. Due to the aging society, it is expected that e.g., from 2010 to 2050 there will be a 1.5-2 fold increase of strokes/year with an expected augmentation in Europe up to 3 Mio new strokes/year. Despite recent efforts and advances in acute stroke treatment and rehabilitation, the recovery from stroke is still far from being satisfying, allowing only 15% of patients to get back to their normal professional and private life. This makes stroke the main causes of long-term disability with large socio-economic impact on the patients’ and families’ life, health care systems and society. Thus, there is a mandatory need for cutting-edge research to enhance the understanding of the mechanisms of recovery from a brain lesion, to be able to develop innovative and effective treatment strategies based on neuro-technology, with the goal to be applied cost-effective in a home-based fashion by the patients themselves.

It becomes more and more clear that not one treatment applied in the same way in all patients will be efficient (‘one suits all strategy’), but that the treatments have to be personalized to the individual requirements and characteristics of the single patient (personalized, patient-tailored medicine approaches). To be able to stratify patients on an individual basis into personalized therapies, we need to develop biomarkers, stratifiers allowing us to predict which course of recovery a patient will take and from which treatment the patient will profit most in a certain period of the recovery process. To achieve this information, (biomarkers) longitudinal and multimodal evaluation of patients is mandatory, and such rich data will then have to be explored by modern computational analyses (e.g., machine learning).

Our general research goal is to develop novel, innovative, patient-tailored treatment strategies for neuro-rehabilitation based on neuro-technologies, especially neuromodulation techniques.

Keywords

Neuroimaging, Neurostimulation, Stroke Rehabilitation, healthy aging, motor control, motor learning, psychophysics.