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Dr Vladimir Litvak
1st floor front room
12 Queen Square
London
WC1N 3BG
Tel: 02078337480
Fax: 020 7813 1420
Appointment
  • Senior Lecturer
  • Imaging Neuroscience
  • Institute of Neurology
  • Faculty of Brain Sciences
Biography

05/2009 – 10/2010  Senior Research Associate at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, UCL Institute of Neurology responsible for developing EEG/MEG analysis methods and support of the SPM software package.



2006 - 2009 – Postdoctoral fellow at the Sobell Department of Motor Physiology and Movement Disorders and Functional Imaging Laboratory, Institute of Neurology, University College of London under the supervision of Prof. Peter Brown and Prof. Karl Friston. Research topic: “Dynamic Connectivity in the Motor System in Health and Disease”.



2001-2006 Ph.D. student at the Biomedical Engineering department of the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology under the supervision of Prof. Hillel Pratt and Dr. Menashe Zaaroor. Research topic: ”Analysis of the Effects of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation on Functional States and Connectivity of the Human Cerebral Cortex Using Electroencephalography”.



8/2004-10/2005- Visiting student at the Human Cortical Physiology Laboratory, Dept. of Neurology, University of Würzburg, Germany. Awarded scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).



1999-2001 M.Sc. student at the Inter-disciplinary Center for Neural computation  (icnc.huji.ac.il) at the Hebrew University. M.Sc. thesis magna cum laude (2001) under the supervision of Prof. Moshe Abeles.



1995-1999 B.Sc. in biology and computer sciences magna cum laude at the HebrewUniversity.

Research Themes
Research Summary

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a form of surgery that is used to treat some of the symptoms of advanced Parkinson's disease. It involves the implantation of wires, with 4 electrodes at their tip to deep brain structures, most commonly an area called ‘the subthalamic nucleus’ (STN) in the two sides of the brain. Following the surgery for a short period of time the other end of the wire implanted in the brain is accessible for recording. For brain researchers this offers a unique opportunity to record invasively the activity of the areas in the human brain not easily accessible to non-invasive methods.
Our team was the first in the world to combine invasive recordings from wires implanted in the brain with non-invasive recordings using a state-of-the-art method called magnetoencephalography (MEG). This method is based on picking up very weak changes in magnetic field around the head caused by synchronized activity of neurons in the brain. By using a MEG scanner we can record the activity of many brain areas at the same time, critically without even touching the patient’s head. This is especially important as the patients in our studies have fresh surgical wounds. The MEG scanner also makes it possible to determine in which brain area a particular signal originates.
We would like to understand how subcortical areas from which we record directly via implanted electrodes communicate with the rest of the brain seen by the MEG. In particular, we are looking at oscillatory neural activity and how it is affected by task performance and medication state.

Appointments
01-NOV-2010 Lecturer Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging UCL Institute of Neurology, United Kingdom
Academic Background
2006 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Biomedical Engineering The Technion - Israel Institute of Technology
2001 MSc (Hons) Master of Science (Honours) – Brain Sciences Hebrew University of Jerusalem
1999 BSc Hons Bachelor of Science (Honours) – Biology and Computer Science Hebrew University of Jerusalem
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