Matin Jafarian and Ajay Seth have been awarded a NWO Open Competition Grant

Nieuws - 20 januari 2022 - Webredactie 3mE

Matin Jafarian, researcher of Delft Center for Systems and Control and Ajay Seth, researcher at BioMechanical Engineering, have been awarded the NWO Open Competition Grant for their unique research. Jafarian is developing a novel working memory-based model for early diagnosis of attentional disorders. Seth is working on his research project ‘From fossils to function’, he wants to bring early hominid fossils to life through biomechanical simulation.

Matin Jafarian

A novel working memory-based model for early diagnosis of attentional disorders

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurological behavioural disorder. Early diagnosis can significantly improve the quality of life of ADHD patients. A key factor in ADHD is impaired working memory. Working memory is a module of human memory responsible for the temporary retention and processing of information. Current insights into the functioning of working memory in ADHD have not yet established a link with brain activity. Therefore, they are not useful for reliable diagnoses. The goal of Jafarian and her team is to combine data from behavioural observations with measurements of brain activity related to working memory tasks to build a dynamic model for the early diagnosis of ADHD.

Ajay Seth

From fossils to function: bringing early hominid fossils to life through biomechanical simulation

The evolution of human movement remains a mystery. What movements drove the structural changes observable in the fossil record between early hominids and modern humans? Until now, we could only speculate on the movements and behaviours of extinct species by observing the fossil record and correlating structural features with modern analogous species. Biomechanical simulations apply physics to relate musculoskeletal structure to movement. Therefore, Seth and his team propose to bring the fossil record of Australopithecus afarensis to life through the power of biomechanical simulation, not only to study how and when skeletal structures (like the shoulder) evolved, but to answer ‘why?’

Open Competition

The NWO Domain Board Science has awarded 26 applications in the Open Competition Domain Science - XS. Each project could apply for a maximum of 50.000 euros. The themes vary from research into nanoparticles, methane emissions from the arctic, nickel-based Catalysts for Sustainable Biodiesel Processing and a 3D model of lymph nodes to study HIV infection.

The XS category emphatically strives to encourage curiosity-driven and bold research involving a relatively quick analysis of a promising idea. The Open Competition Domain Science – XS will continue in 2022. The next deadline is on 15 February 2022, 14:00:00 CET. More information is available on the website.

Read more: Twentysix groundbreaking research projects launched via the Open Competition Domain Science – XS | NWO