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Lior Shmuelof

College positions:
Visiting Fellow
Cognitive and motor recovery after stroke, Neurology, Stroke Medicine
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Contact details:

Dr Lior Shmuelof

Dr Shmuelof completed his PhD in Neurobiology at the Hebrew University, studying the involvement of the motor system in action understanding, based on the hypothesis that both motor control and action observation require internal modelling for predicting the outcome of the actions.

He then did his postdoctoral training at Columbia University with Professor John Krakauer and Professor Pietro Mazzoni, developing a framework for studying and assessing motor acuity (Shmuelof et al., 2012), and modularity in motor learning by differentiating the contribution of errors and rewards to motor learning and motor retention (Shmuelof et al., 2012), and at the Weizmann Institute, with Professor Tamar Flash, where he investigated the mechanisms and constraints underlying the planning of a motor action (Kohen et al., 2017).

In 2013, Dr Shmuelof joined the Department of Cognitive and Brain Sciences at Ben-Gurion University, where he studies the interaction between cognitive and motor processes during the acquisition of motor skills and the recovery of lost abilities following brain damage. Specifically, he uses functional and structural MRI imaging and behavioural measurements for studying locomotor adaptation and long-term locomotor memories (Mawase et al., 2017) and manual drawing skills (Shmuelof et al., 2014).

Dr Shmuelof is also interested in translational research in the fields of aging and rehabilitation. He studied the effect of dynamic balance training on balance control in CP (Mawase et al., 2016) and in stroke and TBI (Joubran et al., 2021) and together with Dr Simona Bar-Haim, he is leading a translational neurorehabilitation laboratory that conducts clinical studies that aim to assess the feasibility and efficacy of interventions that aim to utilise neural plasticity after brain damage, and to develop quantitative measures of motor impairments using advanced pose estimation algorithms and IMUs.

Select publications

  • Dissociation between ventral and dorsal fMRI activation during object and action recognition. Shmuelof L, Zohary E. Neuron 47:457–470 (2005)
  • Mirror-image representation of action in the anterior parietal cortex. Shmuelof L, Zohary E. Nature Neuroscience 11: 1267-1269 (2008)
  • Functional Organization of Human Motor Cortex: Directional Selectivity for Movement. Eisenberg M, Shmuelof L, Vaadia E, Zohary E. Journal of Neuroscience 30: 8897-8905 (2010)
  • Are we ready for a natural history of motor learning? Shmuelof L, Krakauer JW. Neuron 72: 469-76 (2010)
  • How is a motor skill learned? Change and invariance at the levels of task success and trajectory control.
  • Shmuelof L, Krakauer J, Mazzoni P. Journal of Neurophysiology 108: 578:594 (2012)
  • Overcoming motor ‘forgetting’ through reinforcement of learned actions. Shmuelof L, Huang V, Haith A, Delnicki RJ, Mazzoni P, Krakauer JW. Journal of Neuroscience 32: 14617-14621 (2012)
  • Formation of long-term locomotor memories is associated with functional connectivity changes in the cerebellar-thalamic-cortical network. Mawase F, Bar-Haim S, Shmuelof L. Journal of Neuroscience 37(2):349-361 (2017).
  • Locomotor Adaptation Is Associated with Microstructural Properties of the Inferior Cerebellar Peduncle. Jossinger S, Mawase F, Ben-Shachar M, Shmuelof L. The Cerebellum (2020)
  • The functional and structural neural correlates of dynamic balance impairment and recovery in persons with acquired brain injury. Joubran K, Bar-Haim S, Shmuelof, L. Scientific Reports 12 7990 (2022)

Select awards

  • Dr Shlomiuk award from the board of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem for outstanding PhD Research
  • Alon Fellowship for young faculty members from the Israeli Council for Higher Education

Further links