About this Research Topic
The ability to maintain balance when standing and walking is critical to the avoidance of falls in older adults. Recent studies have suggested that in older adults, the control of standing and walking, particularly in the context of complex environmental and/or task constraints, is dependent upon a host of supraspinal neural networks. These networks, once clearly defined, promise to serve as new targets for preventative and/or rehabilitative strategies aimed at enhancing the ability of older adults to safely stand and walk during their activities of daily living.
Recent technological advances have provided researchers with an array of tools to measure specific neural structures and functions related to the acts of standing and walking; e.g., electroencephalogram (EEG), functional near-infrared spectrum (fNIRS), (functional) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET), computerized tomography (CT). These tools, especially when paired with advanced nonlinear signal processing and/or machine learning techniques, offer exciting new opportunities to study the supraspinal elements of the motor control system as it pertains to the complex control of standing and walking.
At the same time, there is now available an array of technologies that enable safe and selective modulation of brain activity; e.g., transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), transcranial electrical stimulation, deep brain stimulation (DBS). These techniques also offer novel opportunities to probe, and potentially improve, the supraspinal control of standing and walking in aging.
The overall aim of this Research Topic is to share and discuss recent achievements to understand and/or enhance the supraspinal control of standing and walking in older adults, with a focus on the following subtopics:
• application of advanced neural imaging (e.g., MRI, MR spectrum, EEG, fNIRS)
• neural modulation techniques (e.g., tES, TMS, DBS, temporal interference stimulation)
• data analytical techniques
Original Research, Review Papers, Brief Research Report, Methods Papers, General Commentary covering topics ranging from basic to translational-clinical research in this field are welcome.
The Guest Editors would like to express their profound gratitude to Dr On-yee Lo and Dr Xinyi Geng for their valuable work in initiating this Research Topic project providing their input
Keywords: Aging, Supraspinal control, Standing and walking, Neuroimaging, Neural modulation
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