Carolynn Patten

Carolynn Patten is a neuroscientist and physical therapist who specializes in assessment and treatment of motor dysfunction associated with aging and adult neuropathologies, such as stroke. She directs the UC Davis Biomechanics, Rehabilitation, and Integrative Neuroscience (BRaIN) Lab and co-leads the UC Davis Center for Neuroengineering and Medicine.

Patten’s research focuses on understanding the neural basis of human movement, investigating human motor control and learning from a perspective of neuromechanics. Using concurrent behavioral and neurophysiological methods, her laboratory has developed assays sensitive to motor impairment. An emphasis of the lab’s current work is identification of biomarkers to predict motor recovery following stroke and the critical factors that contribute to rehabilitation efficacy. To achieve these goals, projects in the BRaIN Lab investigate neural mechanisms and biomechanical consequences of central nervous system (CNS) pathologies causing motor dysfunction; novel means to induce neuroplasticity and motor recovery; and individual differences in both the natural history of motor recovery and response to rehabilitation interventions.

Building on this background, current work supported by CITRIS uses noninvasive and wearable technologies that enable continuous motion sensing to develop data analytic algorithms to identify critical thresholds of motor function and physiologic capacity in older adults living independently in the community.

Research interests: biomarkers, neuromechanics, human performance, signal processing, gait, rehabilitation, motor control

Research Thrusts

Research Areas



  • UC Davis | Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation