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Photo of Santacruz, Samantha

srsantacruz@utexas.edu
Office Location: BME 5.202E

Samantha Santacruz

Assistant Professor

Department Research Area:
Biomedical Imaging and Instrumentation

Research Interests

Neural engineering, brain-machine interfaces, neurotherapeutic devices, neuromodulation.

Research Focus

Research in the Santacruz lab focuses on the engineering advancement of neuroprosthetics and their therapeutic application to a growing range of neurological disorders. In order to advance future generations of neuroprosthetics, the lab investigates neuroscientific questions related to understanding how neural patterns or states are learned, as well as how to manipulate these processes. This work will lay the foundation for the development in the lab of new neurotechnologies and paradigms for expanding the set of neurological disorders treated with brain-machine interfaces and neuroprosthetic devices.

Professor Santacruz and her team utilize a number of techniques in in vivo experiments to examine and modulate neural states. The lab performs offline analysis to model induced state changes and evolution of neural patterns, within and across a variety of brain regions, using signal processing and machine learning methodologies. These analyses serve to both elucidate the mechanisms supporting relevant neural processes, as well as to develop hypotheses regarding neurotherapies that can be subsequently tested in vivo. The lab also works on developing neural interfaces used for neuroprosthetics and stimulation-based neuromodulation therapies.