The goal of the lab is to further our understanding of the volitional control of compensatory postural responses and contribute to the existing body of fall prevention research in older adults.
Dr. Hernandez's professional interests include biomechanics, motor control, and neuroscience in older adults. Dr. Hernandez's research has focused on the use of experimental and theoretical models of risk factors for injury or disability during the performance of goal-directed movements in older adults with and without neurological disorders, particularly Parkinson's disease. Dr. Hernandez is interested in the behavioral and neural mechanisms underlying postural dysfunction in older adults and particularly in the development of behavioral and neural biomarkers for early detection of neurological disorders.
The lab uses state-of-the-art motion capture, equipment for biomechanical measures, and non-invasive brain imaging to simultaneously record movements and brain activity during functional whole body movements. Using interdisciplinary approaches, our lab examines the underlying behavioral and neural mechanisms underlying postural dysfunction in older adults with neurological disorders, such as Multiple Sclerosis or Parkinson's disease, to better identify potential behavioral and neural biomarkers of neurological disorders. Given the interdisciplinary nature of our work, our lab collaborates with colleagues in Medicine, Neuroscience, Physics, Engineering, and Kinesiology across the University of Illinois campus and other national universities and institutions.
Sandroff BM, Hernandez ME, Holtzer R, Izzetoglu M, Motl RW. Examining the patterns of prefrontal cortex activation during performance of an executive function task in persons with multiple sclerosis using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. Current Trends in Neurology; 2017; 11: 31-40.
Chaparro G, Balto JM, Sandroff BM, Holtzer R, Izzetoglu M, Motl RW, Hernandez ME. Frontal brain activation changes due to dual-tasking under partial body weight support conditions in older adults with multiple sclerosis. Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation 2017; 14:65. doi:10.1186/s12984-017-0280-8.
Klaren RE, Balto JM, Sandroff BM, Chaparro G, Hernandez ME, Motl RW. Preliminary evidence for the effects of aging and multiple sclerosis on cognitive performance: an analysis based on effect size estimates. Experimental Aging Research 2017; 346-354. doi:10.1080/ 0361073X.2017.1333820.
Motl RW, Chaparro G, Hernandez ME, Balto JM, Sandroff BM. Physical function in older adults with multiple sclerosis: an application of the short physical performance battery. Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy 2016; doi:10.1519/JPT.0000000000000115.
Hernandez ME, Holtzer R, Chaparro G, Jean K, Balto JM, Sandroff BM, Izzetoglu M, Motl RW. Brain activation changes during locomotion in middle-aged to older adults with multiple sclerosis. Journal of Neurological Sciences 2016; 370:277-283. doi:10.1016/j.jns.2016.10.002.
Moon J, Sung J, An R, Hernandez ME, Sosnoff JJ. Gait Variability in People with Neurological Disorders: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Human Movement Science 2016; 47:197-208. doi:10.1016/j.humov.2016.03.010.
Hernandez ME, Snider J, Stevenson C, Cauwenberghs G, Poizner H. A correlation-based framework for evaluating postural control stochastic dynamics. IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering 2016; 24, 551-61. doi:10.1109/TNSRE.2015.2436344.
Lainscsek C, Hernandez ME, Poizner H, Sejnowski T. Delay Differential Analysis of Electroencephalographic Data. Neural Computation; Neural Computation 2014; doi:10.1162/NECO_a_00656. Lainscsek C, Hernandez ME, Weyhenmeyer J, Sejnowski T, Poizner H. Non-linear dynamical analysis of EEG time series distinguishes patients with Parkinson’s disease from healthy individuals. Frontiers in Neurology 2013; doi:10.3389/fneur.2013.00200.
Lainscsek C, Weyhenmeyer J, Hernandez ME, Poizner H, Sejnowski T. Non-linear dynamical classification of short time series of the Rössler system in high noise regimes. Frontiers in Neurology 2013; doi:10.3389/fneur.2013.00182.
Lukos JR, Snider J, Hernandez ME, Tunik E, Hillyard S, Poizner H. Parkinson’s disease patients show impaired corrective response control and eye-hand coupling when reaching to virtual objects. Neuroscience 2013; doi:10.1016/j.neuroscience.2013.09.026.
Hernandez ME, Ashton-Miller JA, Alexander NB. Age-related differences in maintenance of balance during forward reach to the floor. The Journals of Gerontology: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences 2013; 68(8):960-967.
Hernandez ME, Ashton-Miller JA, Alexander NB. The effect of age, movement direction, and target size on the maximum speed of targeted COP movements in healthy women. Human Movement Science 2012; 31:1213-1223.
Hernandez ME, Ashton-Miller JA, Alexander NB. Age-related changes in speed and accuracy during rapid targeted center of pressure movements near the posterior limit of the base of support. Clinical Biomechanics 2012; 27(9):910-916.
Hernandez ME, Goldberg A, Alexander NB. Decreased muscle strength relates to self-reported stooping, crouching, or kneeling difficulty in older adults. Physical Therapy 2010;90:67-74.
Hernandez ME, Murphy SL, Alexander NB. Characteristics of older adults with self-reported stooping, crouching, or kneeling difficulty. The Journals of Gerontology: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences 2008; 63A(7):70-74.
Goldberg A, Hernandez ME, Alexander NB. Trunk repositioning errors are increased in balance-impaired older adults. The Journals of Gerontology: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences 2005; 60A(10):1310-1314.