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  3. Margaux Noemie Lafitte
Noemie Lafitte
Fields of study:
Neuroengineering / Orthopaedics
Dr. Kenji Suzuki / Dr. Masashi Yamazaki

Toward a globalized fusion of fields

Before entering Humanics, I graduated from a Master's degree in Neuroscience. I thus come from a purely biological background. After graduating, I knew that I wanted to do more and that I wanted to combine neuroscience with other fields, and especially engineering and informatics. As during my previous research experience, I had the opportunity to work with various profiles, I realized how essential the collaboration between fields is, and how precious a pluridisciplinary background can be. Thanks to a partnership between my home university in France and the university of Tsukuba, I got the opportunity to attend the 2019 Tsukuba Summer Research School. Upon this occasion, I discovered the Artificial Intelligence lab and was introduced to the Humanics program, which was offering exactly what I was looking for. It was also at that time that I got interested in biosignal-controlled exoskeleton, and especially the marvel of neuroengineering that is the Hybrid Assistive Limb. Joining this program and working on this matter was thus the most natural thing to do. Now I try to uncover the neurological mechanisms underlying the very promising results of HAL as a rehabilitation tool. More specifically I collect data from patients with motor impairments using a 3D motion analysis system and electromyography and try to correlate proprioceptive abilities to HAL-induced progress.

I work in a very stimulating environment both thanks to the internationalism and interdisciplinarity of my labs. All members have various profiles and are very accessible, supportive and helpful. Humanics teaches us not only theory with classes but also gives us more concrete opportunities to interact with representatives of private and public fields, always revolving around multipotentiality and pluridisciplinary. It is not an unilateral teaching but offers a lot of interactions and possibilities to think critically and express our own opinions.

[Time table of an ordinary day]

Arrival to the Hospital
Data collection during rehabilitation sessions using HAL: motion capture and EMG
Lunch Break
Data preprocessing within recording software
Back to AI lab to run kinematics and myoelectric signal analysis
Assignements,reports, reading papers

Analysis of kinematic and electromyographic data from rehabilitation sessions using specifically designed MATLAB scripts.

Most experiments are done in the Center for Innovative Medicine and Engineering, where motion capture and robot-assisted rehabilitation can be performed.

Gathering and presenting your data is an important part of the program.