The ICNR2024 program will be composed of regular, special and poster sessions, and workshops. Furthermore, plenary lectures will be given by well-known scientists in the field of neurorehabilitation. The program will aim at enriching the knowledge of the participants, widening their point of view on specific topics related to neurorehabilitation, and getting in closer contact with experts in this field.

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Christine Azevedo-Coste, PhD
Research Director
Montpellier, France

Title: Restoring Grasping Functions via Epineural Electrical Stimulation: A Journey from Conceptualization to Near-Future Solution Availability for Individuals with Tetraplegia

Assisting individuals with impaired upper limb movement due to sensory-motor deficiencies presents significant scientific and technical hurdles in terms of providing practical daily solutions that enhance independence and quality of life of users. Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) stands as a promising avenue. Within our research team, we have explored for twenty years various approaches to develop FES for rehabilitating paralyzed upper limbs in everyday tasks, spanning from surface stimulation to implanted stimulation, as well as hybrid methods combining FES and mechanical orthoses.
In the recently initiated European project AI-Hand, we aim to integrate some of these prior findings to deliver an innovative solution for individuals with complete tetraplegia. This presentation will detail the origin and progress of the AI-HAND project, which entails implanting epineural electrodes around upper limb nerves to restore grasping capabilities. Four individuals with arm paralysis have participated in testing an interim version, with efforts currently underway to develop a complete implant together with our partners.


R. James Cotton, MD, PhD
Physician-Scientist at the Center for Bionic Medicine
Shirley Ryan AbilityLab
Northwestern University
Chicago, IL USA

Title: Foundation Models for Gait Analysis to Power Precision Rehabilitation

Wider access to gait analysis in becoming much more feasible due to both technological and methodological advances. High-performance differentiable biomechanical models allow integrating biomechanics tightly into modern machine learning pipelines. This enables end-to-end optimization of biomechanical trajectories in both multiview and single-camera markerless motion capture system along with skeleton scaling, which both outperforms multistage approaches and allows us to joint compute confidence estimates over trajectories. This allows us to collect gait data in clinical settings at unprecedented scales. This enables us to use self-supervised learning to discover gait representation that capture clinically meaningful information and to begin training multi-modal, multi-task foundation models for gait analysis to further improve our understanding of gait in the wild. Finally, we will discuss a causal framework for precision rehabilitation, designed to link these now-accessible measures of gait and movement impairments to long term outcomes at the ICF level of activity and participation and identify the optimal dynamic treatment regime to maximize long-term function.

Levi Hargrove, PhD
Director and Scientific Chair of the Regenstein Center for Bionic Medicine
Shirley Ryan AbilityLab
Chicago, IL USA

Title: The Struggle is Real: Development and Translation of Bionic Limb Technology

Amputation is a leading cause of disability, and prosthetic devices are commonly accepted treatment options to restore functional capabilities. However, current prosthetic devices still cannot fully match the functionality of their natural counterparts. This talk focuses on the progress made in the development and control of bionic limbs for individuals with limb loss. The first portion of the talk provides an overview of the development and commercialization of pattern recognition control systems for prosthetic arms. A significant emphasis of this work has been on evaluation based on real user feedback, ensuring that the developed technologies meet the actual needs and preferences of end users. The second portion focuses on the application of these approaches to controlling powered leg prostheses, highlighting the different challenges presented by the two applications. Finally, I will discuss ongoing work to incorporate connected health systems with advanced machine learning approaches to address some of the remaining challenges, with continued focus on user feedback to refine and improve bionic limb technologies.


José Obeso, MD, PhD
Neuroscience Center (CINCAC)
Madrid, Spain
Title: To be announced


Alessandra Pedrocchi, PhD
Professor of Bioengineering
Department of Electronics, Information and Bioengineering
NEARLab – Neuroengineering and Medical Robotics Laboratory
We-Cobot – Wearable Collaborative Robotics – Interdepartmental Laboratory
Politecnico di Milano
Milan, Italy
Title: To be announced


Rüdiger Rupp
Professor for Assistive Neurotechnology
Head of the Experimental Neurorehabilitation Section
Spinal Cord Injury Center
Heidelberg University Hospital
Heidelberg, Germany

Title: Neurotechnology versus user needs – A perfect match?