Dr Ingvars Birznieks is a sensory neurophysiologist interested in sensory information encoding mechanisms. He received his PhD training at the Umeå University in Sweden and the University of Melbourne, Australia - the leading laboratories in the field of somatosensory research.
During his postdoctoral studies at the Prince of Wales Medical Research Institute in Sydney, he broadened his research competence investigating proprioception, muscle pain mechanisms and function of the autonomic nervous system.
From 2011 to 2014 he held an academic position of Senior Lecturer (Physiology) at the School of Science and Health at the Western Sydney University where he engaged in Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience (BENS) research program at MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour & Development.
Since 2014 he is at the Department of Physiology, School of Medical Sciences, UNSW Medicine in Sydney. In the role of a Senior Research Fellow he leads the Tactile research group at the Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA).
His research primarily comprises range of studies related to the function of tactile receptors and sensorimotor control of the human hand. However, his ultimate goal is to use this fundamental knowledge and develop two branches of collaborative networks - one with clinicians, which would be aimed to develop new methods for evaluation of sensorimotor function in different groups of patients, while the second branch would be aimed to work with biomedical engineers to create artificial sensors and control algorithms for prosthesis and robotic manipulators resembling functionality of the human hand.
Research topic classification: tactile, tactile sensing, tactile sensors, touch, touch perception, vibro-tactile, sensory physiology, sensory, processing, sensory systems, haptics, neurobiology, neurophysiology, neuroscience, peripheral nervous system, prostheses, robotics, stroke, stroke rehabilitation, sensorimotor control, dexterity, hand, biomedical engineering, bionics, computational neuroscience.
Birznieks I., Vickery R.M., Potas J.R., Shivdasani M., The role of spike patterning in shaping human perception of tactile stimuli. ARC Discovery Project grant. App Id: DP200100630 $550,000 Funding for 2020-2022
Birznieks I. Sensory mechanisms underlying human dexterity in object manipulation. ARC discovery project grant. App Id: DP170100064 $365,500; Funding for 2017-2019
Breen P., Stiefel K., Birznieks I., Penkala S. A novel electrical device to restore sensory feeling lost due to disease and ageing. NHMRC Project Grant Funding Round. App Id: APP1067353 $308,247; Funding for 2014-2016
Birznieks I., Khamis H. Sensorimotor control of hand movement and dexterous object manipulation. 2013 UWS School of Science and Health Strategic Research Investment grant. $30,000
Birznieks I., Redmond S.J., Macefield V.G. The encoding of friction by tactile mechanoreceptors – the key to fingertip force control during dexterous object manipulation by humans. ARC discovery project grant. App Id: DP110104691 $290,000; Funding for 2012-2014
Birznieks I., Vickery R.M., Macefield V.G., Krishnan A.V. Information encoding by temporal structure of afferent spike trains evoked by complex vibrotactile stimuli. NHMRC Project Grant Funding Round. App Id: APP1028284 $231,175; Funding for 2012-2014
Macefield V.G., Birznieks I. The effects of tonic muscle pain on the sympathetic and somatic motor systems in human subjects. NHMRC Project Grant Funding Round. App Id: APP1028284 $447,350; Funding for 2012-2014
Seizova-Cajic T., Birznieks I. Adaptation and aftereffects in perception of tactile motion. ARC discovery project grant. App Id: DP110104691 $160, 000; Funding for 2011-2013