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General Motor Control Mechanisms & Disease Training Program

The ability to initiate, execute, and terminate movement appropriately is critical for survival but is impaired in a range of debilitating diseases. Precisely how the nervous system encodes movement and how this neural machinery is compromised by disease remain poorly understood. A primary mission of the neuroscience community is to fill these gaps in our knowledge and translate this new information into better clinical practice. To carry this multi-generational effort forward, it is critical that early career scientists are well-trained. They need a firm grasp of what we know and don’t know, experimental skills at the molecular, cellular, and systems levels, and dedication to rigorous, quantitative, and ethical research. With these goals in mind, a group of world-leading basic, clinical, and translational motor control scientists have come together to deliver a training program for pre- and post-doctoral scientists committed to motor control research at Northwestern University (NU).


The goals of the NU General Motor Control Mechanisms and Disease Training Program (GMCMD-TP) are:

1) to educate trainees in basic, translational, and clinical motor systems neuroscience at the molecular, cellular, and systems levels;

2) to provide trainees with the conceptual, technical, and quantitative skillsets necessary to address major questions, challenge dogma and make impactful research discoveries;

3) to encourage trainees to consider the disease relevance of their research and its translational potential;

4) to instill in trainees a deep commitment to rigorous, ethical, and responsible research;

5) to enhance trainees’ skills in communicating their research;

6) to give trainees opportunities to advance their career goals so that we support the next generation of leaders in the field of motor control.


Pre-doctoral trainees in the NU Interdepartmental Neuroscience (NUIN) program and the Neural Engineering track of the Biomedical Engineering program, and post-doctoral trainees in the laboratories of program faculty are eligible for the GMCMD-TP.


The GMCMD-TP consists of:

1) a core course covering each aspect of the motor system;

2) informal seminars by preceptors on their motor control research programs;

3) training and consultation in statistics;

4) an annual retreat where members of the NU motor control research community come together to communicate and discuss their research;

5) opportunities for shadowing movement disorder clinicians;

6) research center days, each focused on a specific motor control disease.

In addition, GMCMD-TP trainees utilize Individual Development Plans and NU professional development programs to further promote career advancement. Each year up to 4 pre-doctoral (1 international trainee) and 3 post-doctoral trainees will be eligible for direct support for 1-2 years. 


Our Team


  • Mark Bevan, PhD

Steering Committee

  • Mark Bevan, PhD
  • Mitra Hartmann, PhD
  • Dimitri Krainc, MD
  • D. James Surmeier, Jr., PhD
  • Matthew Tresch, PhD


  • Awatramani, Raj
  • Bevan, Mark
  • Chan, Savio
  • Contractor, Anis
  • Corcos, Daniel
  • Dewald, Julius
  • Disterhoft, John
  • Dombeck, Daniel
  • Ellis, Michael
  • Garcia-Anoveros, Jaime
  • Hartmann, Mitra
  • Heckman, CJ
  • Kalb, Robert
  • Kessler, John
  • Kiskinis, Evangelos
  • Kozorovitskiy, Yevgenia
  • Krainc, Dimitri
  • Lerner, Talia
  • Ma, Yong Chao
  • Martina, Marco
  • McCrimmon, Donald
  • McLean, Dave
  • Miller, Lee
  • Miri, Andrew
  • Mussa-Ivaldi, Ferdinando
  • Opal, Puneet
  • Ozdinler, P. Hande
  • Parisiadou, Loukia
  • Parker, Jones
  • Penzes, Peter
  • Raman, Indira
  • Rymer, William
  • Shepherd, Gordon
  • Siddique, Teepu
  • Surmeier, D. James
  • Tresch, Matthew
  • Tysseling, Vicki
  • Yang, Yue

Contact Us

For more information, contact Mark Bevan, PhD, at

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