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An Investigation of Jin Shin Treatment after Stroke

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CANDIDATE: The candidate, Theresa D. Hernandez, Ph.D, is an Associate Professor in the Dept. of Psychology and the Center for Neuroscience. Dr. Hernandez's research has utilized animal models to assess the neurobehavioral consequences of anti-convulsant drugs and seizures after brain injury. She has been a successful, independent, extramurally-funded researcher in this area. Her immediate goal is to acquire new research skills and training to help her achieve her long-term goal of developing a successful, independent, extramurally-funded research program in the clinical science fields of stroke and complementary & alternative medicine (CAM). The proposed K01 development plan will provide Dr. Hernandez with the necessary training to achieve her goal. CAREER DEVELOPMENT PLAN: Dr. Hernandez's research career development training activities consist of: 1) acquired research skills associated with and supplementary to the proposed research plan; and 2) structured activities including formal course work, attendance and presentations at scientific meetings, as well as intensive interactions with her mentors and their research groups. ENVIRONMENT: The environment for Dr. Hernandez's training is outstanding. The Sponsor (Dr. Seals) is a well-established, extramurally-funded scientist with a strong record of mentoring in biomedical and clinical research. His mentoring will be rounded out by a team of extramurally-funded consulting mentors who will provide expertise in specific areas of the training plan. RESEARCH: The general aim of this research is to determine whether a complementary therapeutic approach, Jin Shin Tara (acupressure-like touch), can diminish stroke-associated functional disabilities associated with hemiplegia and aphasia during the stable, post-stroke period. The general hypothesis is that Jin Shin treatment will decrease stroke-associated deficits and disability. Results supporting this hypothesis will provide a scientific basis for the potential use of a complementary therapeutic approach in individuals years after stroke, for whom there are few interventions and a great deal of dependence on providers and family.
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