José Zariffa

Jose Zariffa

José Zariffa | Assistant Professor
BEng (McGill), MASc (Toronto), PhD (Toronto), PEng

Main Appointments

  • Scientist, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute (TRI), University Health Network (UHN)
  • Institute of Biomaterials & Biomedical Engineering

Additional Appointments

  • Edward S. Rogers Sr. Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering
  • Rehabilitation Science Institute

Contact Information

Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, University Health Network
550 University Avenue, #12-102
Toronto, Ontario, M5G 2A2 Canada

+1 416 597-3422, extension 7915 (office)
jose.zariffa@utoronto.ca (email)
Adaptive Neurorehabilitation Systems Lab (web)


Research Themes

Research Areas

Neural engineering; rehabilitation engineering; neurorehabilitation; neural interfaces; neuroprostheses; peripheral nerves; upper limb rehabilitation

Research Interests

Central nervous system disorders such as spinal cord injury, stroke, traumatic brain injury, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease can drastically limit an individual’s independence, mobility, and quality of life. This has dramatic consequences for completing activities of daily living, integrating within the community, and finding opportunities for employment, as well as a considerable economic impact on affected individuals, their families and the health care system. Our research seeks to address these issues by developing technology that can assist functional recovery after damage to the nervous system.

Our approach is to develop rehabilitation technology that can adapt to short- and long-term changes in the user’s neuromuscular system. In order to this, it is necessary to improve our ability to extract information from the nervous system. We conduct projects ranging from direct interfaces with peripheral nerves for monitoring neural signals, to wearable sensors that can capture a person’s interactions with the world around them. We aim to develop tools that can provide detailed information about movement control and performance in varied contexts from the clinic to the community, with areas of application including: neuroprostheses (such as implanted and non-invasive closed-loop functional electrical stimulation systems), the evaluation and optimization of neurorehabilitation interventions (including pharmacological agents, rehabilitation robotics, and clinical programs), and basic neuroscience.

Select Publications

J. Likitlersuang and J. Zariffa, “Interaction detection in egocentric video: Towards a novel outcome measure for upper extremity function”, Journal of Biomedical and Health Informatics, in press.

R.G.L. Koh, A. Nachman, J. Zariffa, “Use of spatiotemporal templates for pathway discrimination in peripheral nerve recordings: A simulation study”, Journal of Neural Engineering, 14(1):016013, 2017.

P. Garai, R.G.L. Koh, M. Schuettler, T. Stieglitz, J. Zariffa, “Influence of anatomical detail and tissue conductivity variations in simulations of multi-contact nerve cuff recordings”, IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, in press.

J. Zariffa, A. Curt, M. C. Verrier, M.G. Fehlings, S. Kalsi-Ryan, GRASSP Cross-Sectional Study Team, and Ontario GRASSP Longitudinal Study Team,  “Predicting task performance from upper extremity impairment measures after cervical spinal cord injury”, Spinal Cord, 54(12):1145-1151, 2016.

J. Zariffa, V. Grouza, M.R. Popovic and M.M. Hassouna, “A phase-based electrical plethysmography approach to bladder volume measurement”, Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 44(4): 1299-1309, 2016.

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