By Kate Hunger
Sandeep Subramanian, Ph.D., BPTh, assistant professor is the lead investigator on a pilot project on stroke recovery chosen to receive a $50,000 grant from the Center for Biomedical Neurosciences at UT Health San Antonio.
The project's co-investigator include the following UT Health San Antonio faculty:
- Maria Danet Lapiz-Bluhm, Ph.D., RN, MSCI, School of Nursing
- Carole White, Ph.D., RN, School of Nursing
- Lee Birnbaum, M.D., Departments of Neurology and Neurosurgery, Long School of Medicine.
- Jesse Neeley, D.O., Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Long School of Medicine, and Medical Director, Reeves Rehabilitation Center
Rounding out the teams is Dr. Sakiko Oyama, of the Department of Kinesiology, Nutrition and Health, at the University of Texas at San Antonio.
Subramanian said depression after stroke affects patients' recovery, and that studies have suggested that depressed patients improve less after therapy and have abnormalities in levels of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF).
"This study aims to identify whether it is any abnormalities in BDNF or other mechanisms that contribute to the influence of post-stroke depression on the ability to functionally use the upper extremities after a stroke," he explained.
Researchers will also use accelerometers to study how much patients are moving their arms when they are not in therapy. The project will study stroke recovery patients at University Health System's Reeves Rehabilitation Center.
"I think it's a huge honor to receive this grant," Subramanian said, adding that the highlight of the project its interdisciplinary focus. "I also would like to acknowledge Kate Aultman, Ph.D., director of research at the School of Health Professions for her support in putting together this grant."