People

Luke E. Miller 

Principal Investigator

Luke joined the Donders Centre for Cognition as an Assistant Professor of Sensorimotor Neuroscience in the fall of 2021. He previously had postdoctoral fellowships at the Donders Institute (w/ Pieter Medendorp) and at the ImpAct Team in Lyon, France (w/ Alessandro Farnè). It was during this time that he began researching the neural and computational mechanisms underlying the sensory embodiment of tools—the ability to use them as somatosensory extensions of the body. His current research aims to uncover the computational principles underlying neural body representation and their plasticity. He currently teaches an MSc course in the Artificial Intelligence department on sensorimotor neurotechnology, which among other things covers the principles of neural prosthetics and brain machine interfaces.

Valeria Peviani

Postdoctoral Fellow

Valeria Peviani is a postdoctoral fellow at the Donders Institute for Brain Cognition and Behavior, supported by the Radboud Excellence Initiative. She is interested in the neurocomputational mechanisms underlying the perception of body and body part position and shape. Before joining the Donders Institute, she got her PhD in Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Pavia, Italy. There she researched healthy and pathological cognitive functioning, in particular in the context of body perception and representation (supervisor: Prof. G. Bottini). After her PhD, she continued her research in the lab of David Poeppel, under the direct supervision of Lucia Melloni (Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Frankfurt am Main, Germany).

Dominika Radziun

Postdoctoral Researcher

Dominika Radziun is a postdoctoral researcher at the Donders Institute for Brain Cognition and Behavior. Her research focuses on understanding the plasticity of spatial body representations from a computational perspective. For example, how do hand-extending exoskeletons change the computations that turn somatosensory input into a representation of the hand? She got her PhD in Neuroscience at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, where she researched body perception and brain plasticity in blind and sighted individuals under the supervision of Prof. Henrik Ehrsson (Karolinska Insitutet) and Prof. Marcin Szwed (Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland).

Huseyin Orkun-Elmas

PhD Student

Hüseyin is a PhD student in the BBT Lab at Donders Institute for Brain Cognition and Behavior. He completed his MSc in neuroscience at Bilkent University, under the supervision of Dr. Burcu Aysen Urgen. During his MSC he investigated how prior information influences biological motion perception, utilizing EEG and behavioral experiments. Now at Donders Institute, Hüseyin's research focus has pivoted to tactile localization. He's deeply interested in modeling the computational mechanisms that underlie tactile localization in both 2D and 3D spaces. His overarching goal is to decipher the neural implementations of these computations.

Floris van Wettum

Master's Student – Artificial Intelligence

Floris is currently completing his MSc in the Artificial Intelligence Department at Radboud University. For his thesis project, Floris is exploring how sensory substitution can be leveraged to create an additional sense of body space. He plans to use computational modelling to explore whether this new sensory signal is optimally integrated with existing signals (proprioception and vision). He will be joining the BBT Lab as a PhD student in the Fall of 2024.

Rob Pennekamp

Master's Student – Artificial Intelligence

Rob is currently completing his MSc in the Artificial Intelligence Department at Radboud University. For his thesis project, Rob is exploring how different aspects of feedback control (e.g., forward estimation, feedback gain) are implemented by neural population dynamics in primary somatosensory cortex. 


David Teulings

Master's Student – Artificial Intelligence

David is currently completing his MSc in the Artificial Intelligence Department at Radboud University. For his thesis project, David is exploring the ethical implications of neurotechnology. This ranges from prostheses, body augmentation technolog, as well as the development of robots that can use and invent their own tools.


Bram van Hees

Master's Student – Artificial Intelligence

Bram is currently completing his MSc in the Artificial Intelligence Department at Radboud University. For his thesis project, Bram is interested in the neural mechanisms for cutaneous-proprioceptive integration. He is currently building a modular neural network that can process touch and proprioception, as well as integrate them in order to form a spatial representation of touch location.


Siebe Geurts

Master's Student – Artificial Intelligence

Siebe is currently completing his MSc in the Artificial Intelligence Department at Radboud University. For his thesis project, he is interested in how the sensorimotor system adapts to the use of neurotechnology. Specifically, he will investigate how learning to use finger-extending exoskeletons modulates proprioceptive representations of the user's biological and exoskeletal fingers. He is further interested in how this behavioral plasticity relates the feeling of embodiment of the exoskeletal fingers.

Alumni

Cécile Fabio

PhD Student  (w/ Alessandro Farnè)

Cécile did both her MSc thesis and PhD at the CRNL ImpAct Team in Lyon, France, where she was co-supervised by me and Ale Farnè. She employed EEG to investigate whether tool-users repurpose neural oscillations that map touch on the body to map touch on a tool.. Cécile is now a postdoctoral researcher with Christoph Kayser at Bielefeld University.

Felix Jarto

Master's Student – Cognitive Neuroscience (w/ Pieter Medendorp)

Felix was in the CNS Master's program here at the DCC and completed his thesis in the lab. In his thesis, Felix was interested in the sensory (whole-hand vibrations) and neural (modelled pacinian afferent responses) information used by tool-users to localize where a tool is touched. Felix is now a PhD student with Sigrid Dupan at University College Dublin.

Lefteris Zografos

Master's Student – Cognitive Neuroscience

Lefteris did his MSc thesis in the lab on reference frame transformations during tool use. Specifically, he was interested in how the represented location of touch on a tool (a tool-centered reference frame) is transformed in the an eye-centered representation. He simultaneously recorded localization behavior and EEG signals to characterize both the transformations and their electrophysiological correlates.

Tobias van der Gaag

Master's Student – Artificial Intelligence

Tobias completed his MSc thesis in the lab. His thesis project explored whether multisensory integration in peripersonal space reflects Bayesian causal inference. His project involved building a BCI model of visual-tactile integration in peripersonal space and using this model to fit psychophysical data.

Leo Pfiefer

Bachelor's Honours Student – Psychology

Leo did his Psychology Honours thesis in the lab. He was interested in how the brain represents the space of the body and of tools. His project investigated whether the representations of the arm and a hand-held tool merge together during tool-use. 

Manon Joosten

Master's Student – Cognitive Neuroscience; (w/ Pieter Medendorp)

Manon completed her MSc in the Cognitive Neuroscience program at the Donders Institute.  For her thesis project, she built a Bayesian model of a postural arm representation in three-dimensions. T