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Brain and Action Lab

Welcome to the Brain and Action Laboratory at the University of Georgia! Our lab seeks to understand the behavioral and neural mechanisms of goal-directed movement. We combine behavioral, neuroimaging, and neurostimulation methods to investigate how brain flexibly transforms goals into motor-specific representations to guide action. The long-term goal of this research is to establish a mechanistic framework rooted in basic human motor neuroscience to investigate impairments in goal-directed movements prevalent in neurological disease or after brain injury.

Our laboratory is affiliated with:

Current Projects

The Neural Control of Manual InterceptionIntercepting a moving object at the right time and place requires continuously integrating visual and motor information. In this project, we measure movement kinematics, functional MRI activity, and transcranial magnetic stimulation-elicited motor-evoked potentials to investigate how the brain organizes visual and motor information to successfully coordinate interceptive actions.
The Role of Task Complexity in Visuomotor Decision-MakingThe ability to rapidly make and update decisions underlie efficient motor control. In this project, we investigate how decision-making and movement strategies depend on the complexity of the decision context and the movement to be performed.
Hand-Eye Coordination in Children with Cerebral PalsyIn children with cerebral palsy, early brain injury or malformation can often lead to deficits in hand-eye coordination. This collaborative project, with professor Christopher Modlesky , aims to understand how differences in cortical processing contributes to changes in visuomotor function in children with cerebral palsy.

Equipment

Located in the Ramsey Student Center, the Brain and Action Laboratory (and affiliated Neurostimulation Laboratory) includes the following equipment:

  • KINARM End-Point Lab with integrated remote gaze tracking (Eyelink 1000)
  • Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (DuoMAG MP-Dual and DuoMAG XT) with neuronavigation (Brainsight)
  • Electromyography (4-channel wired Delsys Bagnoli and 16-channel wireless Delsys Trigno)
  • Mobile eye-tracking (Pupil Core)
  • Drawing and touchscreen tablets

The lab also uses the GE Discovery MR750 3T MRI at the UGA Bio-Imaging Research Center , and has access to equipment in nearby Kinesiology labs, including the:

Meet our Team

Deborah Barany, PhD

Assistant professor and lab director

Ana Gomez Granados, MS

PhD candidate, Kinesiology

Justin McCurdy, BS

PhD student, Neuroscience

Margaret Schrayer, BS

MS student, Artificial Intelligence

Ria Doshi

UGA undergraduate, Biology and Psychology

Sean Gordon

UGA undergraduate, Biology and Psychology

Abraham Hussain

UGA undergraduate, Biology and Psychology

Emma Whitman

UGA undergraduate, College of Public Health

Daniel Zlatopolsky

UGA undergraduate, Biology

Research Opportunities

Join our research team

We are always looking for interested undergraduate and graduate students to join our research team!

Undergraduate students

Students in the lab will have the opportunity be part of an interdisciplinary, collaborative environment and tackle problems from a translational neuroscience perspective. We accept students from a variety of majors, including exercise and sport science, biology, psychology, computer science, and engineering. Members of our lab also have the opportunity to conduct CURO research .

If you are interested, please send a brief email stating your name, intended major, and research interests.

Email us

Graduate students

Before applying for a PhD position in our lab , please email us to discuss your interests and availability.

Additionally, if you are interested in joining the lab as a graduate student in neuroscience , please contact us before you apply for a doctoral position through the integrative life sciences program at the University of Georgia.

Email us

Ongoing Studies

We are recruiting healthy volunteers for our research studies. If you are between 18-40 years of age and are interested in participating, please contact principal investigator Deborah Barany .

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UGA Resources

Contact Info

Lab director: Deborah Barany
Brain and Action Laboratory 103E, Ramsey Center 330 River Road Athens, Georgia, 30602
© University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602
706‑542‑3000