About Our Research

The Neurosurgical Brain Mapping and Restoration Lab was established in 2009. Our primary mission is to explore basic human neuroscientific principles as well as identify brain mapping biomarkers of disease that can drive innovative approaches to restore function to patients with neurological and psychiatric diseases.

Restoring neurological function to debilitated patients requires a sophisticated and multi-faceted approach that integrates neuroscientific knowledge and advanced biomedical engineering and signal classification techniques. In our laboratory, we record brain mapping signals using multiple modalities, including structural MRI, functional MRI, diffusion tensor MRI, electroencephalography, electrocorticography, and electrical stimulation mapping to better understand the nature and significance of brain mapping signals, both in health and in disease. We focus on characterizing and classifying signals associated with unique physiological function, such as motor movements, mood, and consciousness, as well pathophysiological phenomenon, such as cognitive impairments and deficits in inhibitory control.

Our work takes advantage of the unique opportunities provided by open neurosurgical procedures in patients that are awake to maps human motor and cognitive function. Ultimately, our goal is to develop a complex understanding of brain signals to develop high-dimensional, real-time, and reliable brain-computer interfaces to restore function to debilitated patients.

Currently, we are pursuing research projects related to:

  • Visual prostheses to provide artificial vision for the blind
  • Developing novel brain stimulation therapies for chronic pain and depression
  • Characterizing activity-related electrophysiological changes in the human motor system (using both deep brain field potential and electrocorticography)
  • Developing personalized maps of deep brain structures using diffusion tractography (DTI) to target therapeutic interventions
  • Determining electrophysiologic signatures of optimal sites of DBS stimulation and efficacious therapy (LFPs)
  • Exploring the physiological changes in the brain associated with loss of consciousness

Grants & Support

  • National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke - Parkinson Disease Physiology (R01)
  • National Institute of General Medical Sciences - Physiology of Consciousness (R01)
  • National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke - Ethics of Nontherapeutic Intracranial Research (R01)
  • National Institute of Mental Health – Data Archive for the Brain Initiative (R24)
  • National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke – DBS for Depression (UH3)
  • National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke – Cortical Visual Prostheses (UH3)
  • National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke – DBS for Chronic Pain (UH3)


  • "A Method for Deep Brain Stimulation Targeting"

Keywords describing our research

Electrocorticography, brain mapping, motor system, fMRI, neurosurgery, electrical stimulation mapping, diffusion tractography, deep brain stimulation, closed-loop, thalamic segmentation, brain-computer interface, depression, chronic pain.

Join Our Lab

Opportunities for working in the Pouratian Lab will be posted on our Opportunities page as they become available.