Human Threshold Testing Facility

Description
 

This Facility, within the Bioelectromagnetics (BEMS) group, has an international reputation and expertise in research regarding the biological effects of low frequency time-varying magnetic field (MF) exposures and mathematical simulation. This multidisciplinary team of scientists and fellows/students is working toward a common general objective: establishing thresholds for physiological responses to specific time-varying MF exposures. The studies currently conducted at 50 and 60 Hz are not only addressing a need for international regulatory agencies, they are also providing a new point of view regarding the potential mechanisms of action of magnetic field stimuli in the milliTesla range.

For instance, using a multimodality experimental approach, we have suggested an effect of 1.8 and 3 mT 60 MF on neuroprocessing in humans (via synaptic plasticity). These achievements are contributing to the enrichment of the scientific base used by international agencies such as ICNIRP (International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection) to develop and support international guidelines regulating human exposure to electromagnetic fields.

The group continues to strengthen and extend its fundamental research effort, and new projects aiming to establish thresholds at which a systematic neurophysiological response is induced by a magnetic stimulus are being developed and initiated. Neurocomputational modeling is being promoted as a new promising window to understand the underlying electromagnetic interactions: this modelling approach offers for example a mechanistic hypothesis supporting reported effects on synaptic plasticity. Both these experimental and theoretical insights are integrated within an emerging research effort: potential translation to therapeutic strategies in neuromotor disorders.

This facility is also available on contract to test other stimuli and for patient/study diagnostic use as a wide-range test facility for human sensory/motor and neurocognitive testing.  The facility contains a wide assortment of testing capability all housed within an available hypoxia-controlled (monitored artificial hypoxic atmosphere to 4500m altitude) environment.  Equipment includes 32 channel ambulatory EEG, 64 and 128 channel fixed-lead EEG/EMG, 6 degrees of freedom force plate, 16 channel Polhemus, fingertip micro-tremor monitoring, HR, BOP, audio/video, PC-controlled psychometrics, hot/cold neurosensory stimulation.  Most of the above equipment, including a 128 channel EEG/EMG, is also available within our 3T mMR/PET/EEG/EMG hybrid imaging facility.

All rights reserved. Lawson Imaging, Lawson Health Research Institute
268 Grosvenor Street, London, Ontario, Canada N6A 4V2
Tel:(519) 646-6100 | Fax:(519) 646-6205