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Dr. Gammon Earhart is the Associate Director of the Movement Science PhD Program, and is a Professor of Physical Therapy, Neurology, and Neurobiology at Washington University in St. Louis, as well as the primary investigator of the Locomotor Control Lab. She received her Master of Physical Therapy degree from Arcadia University, and her PhD from the Movement Sciences Program at Washington University. Next Gammon completed a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Oregon Health & Science University, and she’s with us today to tell us about her journey through life and science.
In her laboratory, Gammon employs kinematic, kinetic, electromyographic, videooculographic and neuroimaging techniques to study the neural control of movement. Her research focuses primarily on individuals with movement disorders, with a particular emphasis on Parkinson disease (PD). There are a number of research areas in Gammon’s laboratory. One major focus is understanding mechanisms underlying gait impairments, such as difficulty turning and freezing, experienced by individuals with PD. Studies also investigate adaptive control of locomotion in response to novel stimuli and training paradigms. In addition, experiments are being conducted to examine the effects of exercise interventions, such as dance and treadmill training, on body and brain function in PD. The effectiveness and side effects of deep brain stimulation in the treatment of movement disorders is also being investigated. Other research areas of interest are related to the natural history of disease progression in PD and the relationships between oculomotor and locomotor control.