Our experts

Meet our team of cross-disciplinary researchers leading the development of neurobionics research at Monash.

Yan Wong
Dr Yan Wong
Senior Lecturer
Head of the Neurobionics Laboratory
Department of Electrical and Computer Systems Engineering
Department of Physiology

Dr Yan Wong works on improving and developing a wide range of neural prostheses, including brain machine interfaces, bionic eyes and cochlear implants. Dr Wong's lab is particularly interested in developing new recording and stimulating technologies, and using novel neuroscience approaches like spectral analysis of the local field potential to improve the efficacy of devices. The lab also works on discovery neuroscience studying how brain cells communicate to allow us to form decisions on where to look and reach.

Current grants

Control of Prosthetic Limbs from Decoded Brain Signals
Freestone, D. R., Grayden, D. B., John, S., Oxley, T. J., Cook, M., Ackland, D. C. & Wong, Y. National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 1/01/18 - 31/12/21

Oscillations as a mechanism for neural communication
Wong, Y., Pesaran, B., Price, N. & Hagan, M. Australian Research Council (ARC) 1/01/20 - 31/12/22

CORTICAL FRONTIERS: Commercialising Pioneering Applications of Brain Machine Interfaces
Lowery, A., Rosenfeld. J., Wong. Y. Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) 1/7/20 - 30/6/21


Arthur Lowery
Professor Arthur Lowery
Director, Monash Vision Group

Professor Arthur Lowery’s neurobionics research interests are in bionic vision and brain machine interfaces. He is the director of the Monash Vision Group and under his leadership, the group has developed the world’s first fully implantable cortical visual prosthesis. His team has also developed wireless neural recording devices to enable the next generation of biomedical implants that can simultaneously deliver electrical stimulation and record from the brain. Professor Lowery is internationally recognised for his innovations in optical communications and commercialisation of research ideas. He has also founded Virtual Photonics Pty Ltd (now VPIphotonics).

Current grants

CORTICAL FRONTIERS: Commercialising pioneering applications of brain machine interfaces
Lowery, A., Rosenfeld. J., Wong. Y. Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) 1/7/20 – 30/6/21

Restoring vision with a wireless multi-electrode cortical device: towards commercialisation
Rosenfeld, J., Ayton, L., Blamey, P. J., Harcourt, J., Harvey, E., Lowery, A. & Rosa, M. National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 1/01/16 - 31/12/21

ARC Centre of Excellence for Integrative Brain Function
Egan, G., Arabzadeh, E., Garrido, M., Grunert, U., Ibbotson, M., Lowery, A., Martin, P., Mattingley, J., Paxinos, G., Petrou, S., Robinson, P., Rosa, M., Sah, P., Skafidas, E., Stuart, G., Diamond, M., Hill, S., Jirsa, V., Johnson, G., Leopold, D., Margrie, T., Markram, H., Mitra, P., Movshon, J., Tanaka, K. & Victor, J. Australian Research Council (ARC), Duke University, Karolinska Institute, Institut national de la sante et de la recherche medicale (French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM)), MRC National Institute for Medical Research, National Institutes of Health (NIH US), New York University, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Cornell University, Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA), Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne , Monash University, Australian National University , University of Melbourne, University of New South Wales, University of Queensland , University of Sydney, RIKEN, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory 25/06/14 - 30/06/21


Jeffrey Rosenfeld
Professor Jeffrey Rosenfeld
Professor of Surgery, Monash University
Senior Neurosurgeon, The Alfred Hospital
Founding Director, Monash Institute of Medical Engineering (MIME)

Professor Jeffery Rosenfeld’s research interests are on improving the outcome for patients with traumatic brain injury and restoring sight to blind individuals using bionic vision. He is also a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences, the Australian Academy Technological Sciences and Engineering, and an International Fellow of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and the American College of Surgeons.

Current grants

BONANZA: Brain Oxygen Neuromonitoring In Australia And New Zealand Assessment (BONANZA) Trial
Udy, A., Cooper, J., Nichol, A., Rosenfeld, J., Menon, D., Bailey, M., Drummond, K., Higgins, L., Vallance, S., Hunn, M., Adamides, A., Bellapart, J. & Diaz-Arrastia, R. 1/01/20 - 31/12/24

EPO-TRAUMA: ErythroPOietin alfa to prevent mortality and reduce severe disability in critically ill TRAUMA patients: a multicentre, stratified, double blind, placebo randomised controlled trial. (The EPO-TRAUMA trial)
French, C., Nichol, A., Bellomo, R., Cooper, J., Bailey, M., Higgins, L., McArthur, C., Hodgson, C., Gabbe, B., Duranteau, J., Presneill, J., Rosenfeld, J., Napolitano, L., Skrifvars, M., Reade, M. & Pettila, V. Australian Government Department of Health 1/04/19 - 1/10/24

Brain Oxygen Neuromonitoring In Australia And New Zealand Assessment (BONANZA) Trial
Udy, A., Cooper, J., Nichol, A., Rosenfeld, J., Menon, D. K., Bailey, M., Drummond, K. & Higgins, L. Australian Government Department of Health 3/01/19 - 30/11/23

Padded headgear use in youth football: what is the evidence?
Willmott, C., Mitra, B., McIntosh, A., Rosenfeld, J. & Makdissi, M. Equity Trustees, Australian Football League 1/07/17 - 31/12/20

Restoring vision with a wireless multi-electrode cortical device: towards commercialisation
Rosenfeld, J., Ayton, L., Blamey, P. J., Harcourt, J., Harvey, E., Lowery, A. & Rosa, M. National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 1/01/16 - 31/12/21


John Forsythe
Professor John Forsythe
Materials Science and Engineering, Monash University
Co-Director Monash Institute of Medical Engineering (MIME)

Professor John Forsythe is a neural tissue engineer with expert knowledge of materials engineering, biomaterials and nanotechnology. His lab, is helping to develop new therapies to regenerate damaged neural pathways in the brain as well as new electrode materials to better interface with the nervous system. Within this rapidly developing field Professor Forsythe is developing potential new treatments for stroke, traumatic brain injury of neurodegenerative diseases.


Mibel Aguilar
Professor Mibel Aguilar
Professor, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Monash University
Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute

 


Mark del Borgo
Dr. Mark del Borgo
Senior Lecturer, Pharmacology, Monash University

Dr Mark Del Borgo received his PhD in pharmacology in 2005 from the University of Melbourne and has had postdoctoral stints at the Department of Chemistry, University of Queensland and the Department of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Kansas. Between 2009-2019 he was a research fellow within the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Monash University and was appointed as Group Leader of the Smart Biomaterials Lab. In January 2020, he took a teaching and research position within the pharmacology department and heads the macro therapeutics lab. His main research interests are in the design and delivery of therapeutics with a particular focus on the use of injectable materials.


Maureen Hagan
Dr Maureen Hagan
Research Fellow, Physiology, Monash University
Head of the Brain Networks and Behaviour Laboratory

Dr Maureen Hagan co-leads the Brain Networks and Behaviour Laboratory that seeks to uncover how different areas of the brain work together to allow us to perceive and interact with the world. Her interests in neurobionics extends this work by developing new electrical stimulation algorithms that target these multi-area brain networks to restore vision.

Current grants

From synapses to networks: understanding how brain networks guide behaviour
Hagan, M. & Cloherty, S. 1/01/20 - 31/12/23

Integration of feedforward and feedback circuits for decision-making
Hagan, M. 1/01/18 - 18/09/21


Martin Hunn
Associate Professor Martin Hunn
Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor, Central Clinical School, Monash University
Director of Neurosurgery, The Alfred Hospital

Associate Professor Martin Hunn is the Director of Neurosurgery at the Alfred Hospital helping to improve the implantation techniques for a range of neural prostheses. Clinically, he has a special interest in acoustic neuroma and other cerebellopontine angle tumours, awake resection of low-grade glioma, surgery for cerebral aneurysms and arteriovenous malformations, cervical spine surgery and the surgical management of trigeminal neuralgia.

Current grants

BONANZA: Brain Oxygen Neuromonitoring In Australia And New Zealand Assessment (BONANZA) Trial
Udy, A., Cooper, J., Nichol, A., Rosenfeld, J., Menon, D., Bailey, M., Drummond, K., Higgins, L., Vallance, S., Hunn, M., Adamides, A., Bellapart, J. & Diaz-Arrastia, R. 1/01/20 - 31/12/24


Wendy Imlach
Associate Professor Wendy Imlach
Deputy Head (Industry and translation), Neuroscience Program Head, Pain Mechanisms Laboratory

Associate Professor Wendy Imlach’s research focuses on changes that happen within the pain processing pathways in the spinal cord following the development of chronic pain. Some of these changes are potential therapeutic targets and are interested in finding new, more effective ways to treat chronic pain.

Current grants

Mechanisms of itch - from endosomal signalling to neural circuits
Imlach, W. & De Koninck, Y. 24/06/19 - 23/06/23

Adenosine A1 receptor modulation: Structure, dynamics & novel pharmacological interventions
Christopoulos, A., May, L., Imlach, W., Hill, S. & Scott, D. 1/01/18 - 31/12/22

Decoding dysfunctional spinal cord circuitry in chronic pain
Imlach, W. & De Koninck, Y. 1/01/18 - 31/12/21

Identifying novel molecular targets for treating chronic pain
Imlach, W. & De Koninck, Y. 1/01/18 - 31/12/21

The search for novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of chronic pain
Imlach, W. 1/04/17 - 31/03/21


Helena Parkington
Emeritus Professor Helena Parkington
Department of Physiology
Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute

Emeritus Professor Helena Parkington works in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Monash University as a Professor.


Nicholas Price
Dr. Nicholas Price
Senior Lecturer, Department of Physiology at Monash University
Deputy Head (Mentorship and infrastructure), Neuroscience Program Head, Neural coding for perception laboratory, Price Laboratory

Dr Nicholas Price studies how the activity of populations of neurons represents the visual world, underlies perception, and controls eye movements. His lab employs a diverse range of methods including studies of human and animal behaviour, extracellular neuronal recordings using multi-electrode arrays, and computational modelling.

Current grants

Rapid plasticity in sensory systems - linking neuronal adaptation and perception
Price, N., Morris, A. & Yu, H. National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 1/01/17 - 31/12/20


Marcello Rosa
Professor Marcello Rosa
Department of Physiology
Deputy Director of the Center of Excellence for Integrative Brain Function Head, Laboratory for Cognitive and Sensory Systems Neuroscience, Rosa Laboratory

Professor Marcello Rosa investigates the information flow between areas of the cerebral cortex, how the brain reorganises following injury to this system, and how neural prostheses can interact with the brain to restore vision. Using a variety of neuroanatomical, electrophysiological, and imaging techniques, he is trying to understand the principles of organisation of the cerebral cortex in complex brains, like those of human and non-human primates.

Current grants

Marcello was awarded an NHMRC Investigator Grant (2021-2025).

Involvement of the claustrum in coordinating brain circuits
Gamanut, R. & Rosa, M. Australian Research Council (ARC) 1/10/19 - 30/09/22

Plasticity of perceptual space under sensorimotor interactions
Morris, A., Rosa, M., Chatzidimitrakis, K., Lappe, M., Fattori, P., Bremmer, F., Wahl, S., Watson, T. & Rucci, M. 1/07/17 - 30/06/21

Neural circuits for residual vision after damage to striate cortex
Rosa, M., Yamamori, T., Martin, P., Yu, H., Mitra, P., Rajan, R. & Watakabe, A. National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 1/01/17 - 31/12/20

Restoring vision with a wireless multi-electrode cortical device: towards commercialisation
Rosenfeld, J., Ayton, L., Blamey, P. J., Harcourt, J., Harvey, E., Lowery, A. & Rosa, M. National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 1/01/16 - 31/12/21

ARC Centre of Excellence for Integrative Brain Function
Egan, G., Arabzadeh, E., Garrido, M., Grunert, U., Ibbotson, M., Lowery, A., Martin, P., Mattingley, J., Paxinos, G., Petrou, S., Robinson, P., Rosa, M., Sah, P., Skafidas, E., Stuart, G., Diamond, M., Hill, S., Jirsa, V., Johnson, G., Leopold, D., Margrie, T., Markram, H., Mitra, P., Movshon, J., Tanaka, K. & Victor, J. Australian Research Council (ARC), Duke University, Karolinska Institute, Institut national de la sante et de la recherche medicale (French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM)), MRC National Institute for Medical Research, National Institutes of Health (NIH US), New York University, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Cornell University, Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA), Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne , Monash University, Australian National University , University of Melbourne, University of New South Wales, University of Queensland , University of Sydney, RIKEN, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory 25/06/14 - 30/06/21


Elizabeth Zavitz
Dr. Elizabeth Zavitz
Research Fellow, Physiology, Monash University

Dr Elizabeth Zavitz studies how populations of neurons represent visual information, and how these representations change depending on the structure of the input. Understanding the natural representation space of a neural population is important for neuroprosthetics because the interaction between this space and the stimulation patterns determines how well an individual is able to learn to use their prosthesis.


Keith Gomes
Mr Keith Gomes (Neurosurgery)
MBBS Bmed Sci (Hons) FRACS
Consultant Neurosurgeon and Supervisor of Neurosurgical Training, Alfred Hospital
Adjunct Lecturer, Department of Surgery, Monash Central Clinical School

Mr Keith Gomes is a neurosurgeon with subspecialty interests and training in Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery. He has extensive experience in surgery for movement disorders including deep brain stimulation, and has conducted research into neural prosthetics, traumatic brain injury, neuro-navigation systems and pain management. He works within the neurobionics research stream to develop new surgical techniques and improve the application of neural prostheses for the management of motor and sensory deficits.


Current PhD students

Sabrina Meikle
Sabrina Meikle
PhD student

Sabrina Meikle is a current PhD candidate whose research interests lie in cortical prosthesis with her thesis specifically focussing on bionic vision. She is currently working to improve the achievable resolution with targeted stimulation in cortical implants through the application of current steering. Her other interests relate to the processing of visual motion and how to recreate this using neurobionics between this space and the stimulation patterns determines how well an individual is able to learn to use their prosthesis.


Timothy Allison Walker
Timothy Allison-Walker
PhD student

Tim is a PhD student with the Neurobionics lab. His research focuses on restoring vision to the blind with cortical visual prostheses. Specifically, he looks at characterising the neural responses to electrical stimulation, and investigating novel ways of controlling and optimising those responses.