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Swallowing, Voice and Neuroimaging Laboratory
Teachers College, Columbia University
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Swallowing, Voice and Neuroimaging Laboratory 

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Current Research


Dr. Malandraki and the staff of the Swallowing, Voice and Neuroimaging Laboratory are currently involved in a number of exciting research endeavors.

Some of the most important research activities undergoing in the lab include the following Neurophysiology, Treatment Efficacy and Telepractice projects:

PROJECT A (Neurophysiology and Treatment Efficacy)

Understanding Chronic Dysphagia and the Role of Swallowing Therapy in Patients with Congenital and Acquired Brain Damage

Short Description: The objective of this study is to investigate the role of strengthening versus skill-based learning swallowing therapy in both pediatric and geriatric populations who present with congenital or acquired brain damage and chronic dysphagia. Both neurophysiological and swallowing physiology data are collected pre- and post-treatment.

Status: Data collection

Funding Source: In preparation

Co-Investigators / Collaborators: Dr. Andrew Gordon, Dr. Kathleen Friel, Dr. Joan Sheppard, Dr. Erika Levy

PROJECT B (Neurophysiology)

Effects of sensory stimulation on neural activity and swallowing performance in healthy older adults and adults with mild Alzheimer’s Disease

Short Description: The objective of this study is to investigate the comparative effects of different types of sensory stimulation both on neural activity and swallowing physiology in older healthy adults and adults with mild Alzheimer’s Disease.

Status: Data analysis and dissemination

Funding Source: Wisconsin Alzheimer Disease Research Center sponsored by the National Institute of Aging (NIA), NIH

Co-Investigators / Collaborators: Dr. JoAnne Robbins, Dr. Vivek Prabhakaran, Dr. Veena Nair, Dr. Sterling Johnson

PROJECT C (Neurophysiology)

Swallowing physiology and neurophysiology of patients with head and neck cancer: A first pilot study

Short Description: The objective of the proposed pilot research study is to collect preliminary data on the effects of surgical treatment and chemoradiation on the swallowing and neural physiology, and the quality of life of patients diagnosed with head and neck cancer.

Status: Data collection

Funding Source: Provost Investment Fund, Teachers College, Columbia University

Co-Investigators / Collaborators: Dr. Chandra Ivey, Dr. Cathy Lazarus, Mr. Winston Cheng

PROJECT D (Telepractice)

Telepractice in the Evaluation and Treatment of Dysphagia

Short Description: This study involves two subcomponents; examining the reliability between face-to-face and tele-evaluations (synchronous and asynchronous), and evaluating the effects of swallowing treatments provided face-to-face vs. via telepractice.

This initiative also includes tele-training and teleconsultation aims. 

Status: Data collection

Funding Source: Awaiting Decision

Co-Investigators / Collaborators: Dr. Serafim Nanas, Dr. Vasiliki Markaki, Dr. Justine Sheppard, Dr. Kathleen Youse

Other Clinical Projects Currently Under Way

  • Investigating the effects of head and neck exercises on swallowing, voice, and muscle activity.  Mentor: Dr. Malandraki, PI: Mr. Avinash Mishra. Co-investigators include: Ms. Akila Rajappa, Ms. Cagla Kantarcigil
  • Investigating the relationship between swallowing physiology and voice parameters (ongoing clinical project in collaboration with the Manhattan VA). Co-investigators include: Ms. Latimer Kells, Ms. Deborah Guida, Dr. JoAnne Robbins