Advancing Digital Endpoints

R. James Cotton, MD, PhD

I am an electrical engineer, neuroscientist, and physiatrist working as a physician-scientist at Shirley Ryan AbilityLab and Assistant Professor in the Northwestern University Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. I completed my residency in PM&R at Shirley Ryan AbilityLab (formers Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago) where I remained as faculty. Prior to that I obtained a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Rice University followed by an MD and PhD in systems neuroscience from Baylor College of Medicine.
My lab works at the intersection of artificial intelligence, wearable sensors, computer vision, causal and biomechanical modeling, and novel technologies to more precisely monitor and improve rehabilitation outcomes. In particular, we focus on methods that can be easily translated and disseminated at scale into the clinic or real world. To enable this, we developed a wearable sensor and smartphone-based platform as well as a multicamera markerless motion capture system, both of which make it easy to acquire precise measurements of movement in clinical sesttings. Applications of this platform currently being tested include gamified electromyographic biofeedback using electromyography acquired from wearable sensors to improve muscle activation after SCI, and video- and sensor-based gait analysis from data acquired using a smartphone in clinic to enable precision rehabilitation interventions.