Seyed Yahya Shirazi, Ph.D.

I am a Postdoc Scientist at the Swartz Center for Computational Neuroscience (SCCN), Institue for Neural Computation (INC), University of California, San Diego. My research at SCCN entails mobile brain/body imaging (MoBI) and supporting EEGLAB with advanced computational source imaging.

Until recenlty, I was a Postdoctoral Scientist at the New York University (NYU). I worked on corticomuscular connectivity during lower-limb motor tasks using high-denisty EEG and high-density EMG to understand how the brain function improves with rehabilitation after stroke and other impairments.

I got my Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Central Florida (UCF) in 2021. My doctoral research was at the intersection of neuroscience and biomechanics of movement. Specifically, I studied human neuromuscular (i.e., brain and muscle) responses to the mechanical perturbations during exercise and locomotion.

Before joining UCF, I studied Biomedical Engineering - Biomechanics for both Masters and Undergraduate at Tehran Polytechnic. My Master's thesis was about the postural stability of lower-limb amputees experiencing perturbations when they were standing.


Education

Universtiy of Central Florida

Doctor of Philosophy
Dissertation: Corticomuscular adaptation to mechanical perturbations in a seated locomotor task
Mechanical Engineering

GPA: 3.75

January 2017 - April 2021

Tehran Polythechnic

Master of Science
Thesis: Dynamic postural stability analysis on standing normal subjects and transtibial amputees
Biomedical Engineering - Biomechanics

GPA: 3.76

September 2011 - Feburary 2014

Tehran Polythechnic

Bechelor of Science
Biomedical Engineering - Biomechanics

GPA: 3.70, with honors, third in the class of 2011

September 2007 - Septermber 2011

Research Experience

Postdoctoral Scientist

MERIIT Lab - New York University

Research focus: Quantify the changes in brain-muscle connectivity after stroke, using high-density EEG and high-density EMG, based on an NSF/FDA Scientist in Residence (SIR) grant. We hope to provide insights on how the connectivity patterns improve with rehabilitation toward developing a medical device development tool (MDDT) to evaluate pre-market rehabilitation devices.
Secondary Focus: Study the intermuscular connectivity to develop biomarkers for different impairments. We work with several clinical parterns to understand how the synchrony of muscle activity changes with different impairments such as Dysphonia, Fatigue, and Stroke. I coordinate and manage the data collections and the communications between the teams.

May 2020 - Present

Graduate Research Assistant

BRaIN Lab - Universtiy of Central Florida

Research focus: Human neural and biomechanical responses to perturbation during locomotion. We use several biomedical systems (EEG, EMG, motion capture, and force sensors) to reach an integrative perspective about the human responses at the brain and body levels. We are interested in finding the common neural correlates of seated exercises with walking. Seated tasks are practical alternatives for walking rehabilitation because patients can complete seated tasks without extra help.
Secondary Focus: We continuously improve both the sensor design and the post-processing pipelines to overcome locomotion-induced artifacts. The new sensor design involves dual-layer EEG, where the second layer only records artifacts from the environment. The post-processing changes include automatic subject-specific detection and rejection of the artifacts. We also use machine learning to separate biological signals (ECG and EOG) and cognitive signals (movement intention) from EEG.

January 2017 - April 2021

Graduate Research Assistant

Dept. of Biomedical Engineering - Tehran Polytechnic

Research focus: Postural balance of transtibial amputees. We compared responses of transtibial amputees and healthy participants to different mechanical perturbations during standing. Perturbations were in the form of a sudden 5-degree rotation in the pitch or roll axes, that is forward and backward (pitch) perturbations, and left and right (roll) perturbations (total four perturbations). Participants were asked to try to maintain their balance and not to step. We quantified postural stability using center-of-pressure metrics, including excursion, standard deviation, and phase plane. We found that the transtibial amputees' postural stability was worst when perturbation was in the negative pitch direction (i.e., backward rotation). We also found that in facing with perturbations, transtibial amputees tend to rely more on their sound limb.

Sept. 2011 - Feb. 2014

Biomechanics Research Intern

Functional Neurosurgery and Stereotaxy Research Centre, SBMU

I had six months of first-hand neurosurgery OR experience. Afterward, we started a series of collaborations for human spine 3D modeling. I created the first pipelines for this effort to develop structural models from CAT scans using Mimics, Geomagic XOR and SolidWorks, and then the FEA pipeline using Ansys Structural.

March 2011 - August 2011

Publications

Journals and Proceedings (see CV or Scholar profile for the most updated)
  • O’ Keeffe R., Shirazi, S.Y. Bilaloglu S., Bighamian R., Raghavan P., and Atashzar S.F, Nonlinear functional muscle network based on information theory tracks sensorimotor integration post stroke, Nature Scientific Reports, Aug 2022. (10.1038/s41598-022-16483-x)

  • O’ Keeffe R., Shirazi, S.Y. Mehrdad S., Crosby T., Johnson A., and Atashzar S.F., Perilaryngeal-Cranial Functional Muscle Network Differentiates Vocal Tasks: A Multi-Channel sEMG Approach, IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, May 2022. (10.1109/TBME.2022.3175948)

  • O’ Keeffe R., Shirazi, S.Y. Yang J., Mehrdad S., Rao S., and Atashzar S.F., Non-parametric Functional Muscle Network as a Robust Biomarker of Fatigue, bioRxiv, Oct 2021. (10.1101/2021.09.29.462080)

  • Shirazi, S.Y. and Huang H.J., Differential theta-band signatures of the anterior cingulate and motor cortices during seated locomotor perturbations, IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering (TNSRE), Feb 2021. (10.1109/tnsre.2021.3057054)

  • Shirazi, S.Y. and Huang H.J., More Reliable EEG Electrode Digitizing Methods Can Reduce Source Estimation Uncertainty, But Current Methods Already Accurately Identify Brodmann Areas, Frontiers in Neuroscience, Nov 2019. (10.3389/fnins.2019.01159)

  • Shirazi, S.Y. and Huang H.J., Influence of Fiducial Mislocation on EEG Source Estimation, Full Contribution Paper, IEEE/EMBS Conference on Neural Engineering (NER), San Francisco, CA, July 2019. (10.1109/ner.2019.8717065)

  • Sarafpour M., Shirazi, S.Y. Shirazi E., Ghazaei F., and Parnianpour Z., Postural Balance Performance of Children with ADHD, with and without Medication: A Quantitative Approach, Full Contribution Paper, The 40th International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC’18), Honolulu, HI, July 2018. (10.1109/embc.2018.8512636)

  • Radaei F., Shirazi, S.Y. Gharibzadeh S., Khashayar P, Ramezani M, and Fatouraee N, Evaluation of Relationship Between Balance Parameters and Bone Mineral Density, Full Contribution Paper, 22nd Iranian Conference on Biomedical Engineering (ICBME 2015), IOST, November 2015. (10.1109/icbme.2015.7404167)

  • Shirazi, S.Y., Safaee Z., and Fatouraee N., The Need for Stump-Socket Interface Pressure Measurement during Bidirectionally Perturbed Stance in Transtibial Amputees, Full Contribution Paper, 21st Iranian Conference on Biomedical Engineering (ICBME 2014), AUT, November 2014. (10.1109/icbme.2014.7043925)


Patents

  • Shirazi, S.Y., Hardware and methods for dual-layer EEG, filed with the USPTO by the University of Central Florida 2022.

  • Shirazi, S.Y., Centrifugal Micro-viscometer. A lab-on-a-chip device to assess the viscosity of biological fluids. Iran Patent #77944, June 2012.


Skills

Workflow
  • Experiment and solution development, IRB and protocol development
  • Biomedical signal acquisition, using EEG, EMG, Motion Capture and Force platforms
  • Signal processing and machine learning
  • Human 3D modeling
Software
  • Programming: Matlab, Python, C
  • CAD and 3D modeling: SolidWorks, AutoCAD, Catia, Geomagic XOR
  • Human 3D modleing: Mimics
  • FEA: Ansys Structural, CFX, and Multiphysics

Interests

I enjoy the integrative analysis of human responses to understand how and why behavior happens. My ultimate goal is to use this knowledge to develop person-specific assistive devices that would tune the assistance based on the need of the person.

The development of robust instruments and effective ways of attenuating artifacts are my other passion. Lab-grade devices are great for research, but for the daily-life, high-density EEG, or sophisticated EMG modules is hard to set up and maintain. Developing wearables with robust signals and acceptable resolution for EEG, EMG may be the middle ground for everyday use of the solutions designed in the research laboratories.


Awards & Certifications

  • New York University nominee for the Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists, 2022
  • Editor's Pick of 2021, Frontiers in Neuroscience Brain Imaging Methods
  • UCF Frank Hubbard Endowed Scholarship for outreach
  • Tehran Polytechnic Honor Student
  • Machine Learning and Neural Network Certification, MATLAB academy
  • Deep Learning Certification, MATLAB academy
  • Cetified ISO 9001:2008 Quality System Management Auditor, IMQ Academy

Download CV in PDF