Jay L. Alberts did his graduate training in the laboratory of Dr. George E. Stelmach at Arizona State University. He received his PhD in 2000. Upon graduation he accepted an Assistant Professor position within the Department of Applied Physiology at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. In 2005 he moved his research laboratory to the Department of Biomedical Engineering and the Center for Neurological Restoration at The Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio.
Dr. Alberts' research is aimed at understanding the structure-function relationships within the central nervous system that underlie skilled upper extremity motor performance and determine the impact of behavioral and surgical interventions to improve motor function in Parkinson’s disease patients. Human studies are currently ongoing to address these basic and translational research questions.
Dr. Alberts is developing and validating new methods of deep brain stimulation (DBS) programming utilizing objective biomechanical outcomes. He is currently testing a neurocomputational approach to DBS programming in which parameters are selected that maximize current spread to the motor region of the STN and minimize spread to non-motor regions of the STN. The results from these studies will provide clinicians with the techniques to better achieve the fundamental goal of DBS: provide maximal motor response while minimizing cognitive-motor declines.
In terms of exercise and PD, Dr. Alberts has developed an intervention designed to augment the voluntary efforts of patients with PD. He and his group are the first to demonstrate that any type of behavioral intervention can alter central motor control processes in PD patients.