M.D., Ph.D. (Neuroscience), University of Iowa
B.S., Integrative Physiology and Exercise Science, University of Iowa
Pediatrics Residency, Rady Children’s Hospital, University of San Diego California
Pediatric Neurology Residency, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard University
Aaron’s research investigates the network effects of brain lesions. There is a long tradition of understanding brain function by noting deficits that result from focal brain injury, termed the lesion method. However, a modern view is that brain functions result from coordinated activity in a network of structures, as opposed to single regions that are typically invoked using the lesion method. Moreover, there is growing appreciation that the behavioral consequences of a focal brain lesion result from lesion-induced alterations in activity in connected brain regions. While the lesion method remains a major tool in defining brain-behavior relationships, the lack of a network perspective is an important limitation.
Aaron, along with Mike Fox, MD, PhD, recently developed a novel method for exploring the networks associated with brain lesions, termed lesion-based network analysis. This technique uses the size and shape of a brain lesion as input into a resting state functional connectivity analysis using normative data. This allows visualization of the functional networks of the lesion site in the normal brain. By doing so this technique expands the lesion method from a tool looking only at the site of injury to one that also looks at the predicted distributed network effects of the brain lesion. Aaron plans to continue to develop lesion-based network analysis as well as investigate possible clinical applications of this technique, such as identifying targets for therapeutic noninvasive brain stimulation.
Aaron is a pediatric neurologist and is interested in development of therapeutic applications of noninvasive brain stimulation in the pediatric population.
Personal Interests / Hobbies: Aaron spends most of his free time with his wife and two year-old daughter. He also enjoys reading, movies, traveling, snowboarding, surfing, and searching for good IPAs.
Personal Goals: Aaron plans to develop a research and clinical program focused on the development of noninvasive brain stimulation as a diagnostic and therapeutic tool for disorders of the brain.