Clinical Orthopedic Rehabilitation and Research Laboratory

an image of brain spectroscopy, commonly used in Sharma’s research, measures brain chemicals to study changes in them re: chronic pain

Above: an image produced by brain spectroscopy, commonly used in Sharma’s research. Spectroscopy measures the level of specific brain chemicals to study changes in individuals with chronic pain.

Clinical Orthopedic  Rehabilitation and Research Laboratory logoThe Clinical Orthopedic Rehabilitation and Research (CORR) Laboratory is committed to providing an opportunity for faculty and students to study the biomechanical and biochemical factors contributing to musculoskeletal injury, and to advance clinical research in orthopedic rehabilitation.

A variety of student research projects are being conducted by the orthopedic research team.


Neena Sharma Neena Sharma, PT, Ph.D., CMPT
Assistant Professor and Director, CORR Laboratory
The focus of Sharma's research is on chronic lower back pain. Using exercise, manual therapy and fMRI assessments, she is exploring possible new treatments for these common and significant impairments.

PubMed: National Library of Medicine

See Neena Sharma's publications at the National Library of Medicine

Selected Research Projects

  1. Lumbo-pelvic motion analysis to study lumbar posture and lifting mechanics:
    This work is being conducted in collaboration with Sara Wilson, PhD, Mechanical Engineering Department, KU Lawrence campus.

  2. Low back pain and brain imaging to examine central sensitization from low back pain and exercise-induced modulation of chronic pain at cortical and subcortical regions as well as central changes in subacute low back pain:
    This work is being conducted in collaboration with William Brooks, PhD, director of the Hoglund Brain Imaging Center.

  3. Functional MRI and manual therapy to examine functional changes following manual therapy intervention:
    The purpose of this study is to establish fMRI protocol for manual therapy and to determine the effects of manual therapy on brain function. This work is being conducted in collaboration with Cary Savage, PhD, and Laura Martin, PhD, at Hoglund Brain Imaging Center.

  4. Pain management and rehabilitation following lumbar spine surgeries to analyze and improve current practices for pain management and rehabilitation following spine surgeries:
    The aim of this project is to use a large database (HERON) to create prediction models related to pain management and rehabilitation services to improve patient outcomes and cost effectiveness following spine surgeries. This work is being conducted in collaboration with Paul Arnold, MD, KU Department of Neurosurgery, and Doug Burton, MD, KU Department of Orthopedic Surgery.


Research Collaboration

Sharma is currently engaged in projects with other top researchers at KU, both at the KU Medical Center campus and on the main campus in Lawrence, Kan. Presently, work is underway with William Brooks, PhD, Sara Wilson, PhD, Paul Arnold, MD, Doug Burton, MD, and Joseph LeMaster, MD.

To learn more about these activities, please visit the following lab sites:

  • Georgia Holland Research Lab
    The major goal of ongoing research in this lab is to improve the health and wellness of people with chronic disease or disability.

  • Hoglund Brain Imaging Center
    The HBIC brings together a unique combination of neuroimaging technologies to engage in activities at the forefront of neuroscientific endeavors.

Last modified: Mar 07, 2016

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Students Projects

Selected grants


Lab Director
Neena Sharma

Neena Sharma, PT, PhD, CMPT


The CORR laboratory space includes a large testing area, two participant changing rooms, and a foyer. Lab team members have offices adjacent to the laboratory. The laboratory houses the following equipment:

– Biodex isokinetic dynamometer
– Biodex Balance System SD
– Optotrak motion-capture system (6 cameras)
– Telemyo wireless EMG system
– Two forceplates
– A LifeFitness treadmill


CORR Lab home

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