Motor Impairment is the final pathway that causes physical disability in a wide range of diseases and health conditions. It can involve weakness, fatigue, impaired sensation, reduced balance, muscle contracture and poor co-ordination - common features of many health conditions and ageing.

NeuRA has a strong history of multidisciplinary research and leadership in advancing scientific understanding of the mechanisms and impacts of motor impairment. In addition to our world-leading spinal cord injury research, a key current focus is the issue of contracture: the disabling stiffening of muscles that occurs after a range of brain lesions such as stroke, head injury, spinal cord injury and cerebral palsy.

Research focus areas
  • Mechanisms of motor impairment
  • Epidemiology of contracture
  • Muscle contracture in cerebral palsy
  • Muscle contracture in children
  • Advanced MRI imaging of muscles and muscle contracture
  • Muscle contracture treatment
  • Changes in muscle architecture in children with cerebral palsy.
Why this research matters

By improving clinical interventions designed to prevent and reverse muscle contractures, we hope to transform the lives of thousands of Australians with cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, rheumatoid arthritis and stroke.