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Prosem Lecture: Leveraging Neuroscience to Understand & Improve Recovery from Neurological Language Disorders
March 7 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Presenter: Haley C. Dresang, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow, Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute and Department of Neurology, University of Pennsylvania
Topic: Leveraging Neuroscience to Understand & Improve Recovery from Neurological Language Disorders
Language abilities following brain injury, stroke, or neurodegeneration rely on plasticity and adaptation from undamaged brain systems. Individuals can compensate for their language impairments by engaging relatively spared cognitive systems, such as long-term semantic memory. However, it remains unclear what brain structures are required and how treatments can best utilize this mechanism. In this presentation, Dr. Dresang will provide an overview of three projects. First, she will discuss how semantic memory can help to offset language deficits in chronic post-stroke aphasia. Second, she will present recent findings that individuals with stroke aphasia and primary progressive aphasia rely on semantic memory for non-linguistic communication, such as gesture. Third, she will discuss how mechanisms of neuroplasticity and non-invasive brain stimulation techniques can advance both prognostics and treatments for language recovery. Finally, Dr. Dresang will share how her future program of research will integrate and advance these three lines of work. This research is significant because it elucidates the brain mechanisms and treatment conditions under which we can improve language outcomes for adults with neurological communication disorders.
The research in this talk has been funded by NIH NIDCD F31 DC017896 and NICHD T32 HD071844.
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