Jacqueline Hebert

Director, Bionic Limbs for Improved Natural Control (BLINC) Lab Associate professor of Medicine, Division of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Associate adjunct professor, Biomedical Engineering

20 September 2018

Jacqueline Hebert is a rehabilitation physician at Edmonton's Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital and part of an international team making bionic breakthroughs to create a sense of movement and feeling in prostheses.

The team, led by the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, used tiny, matchbox-sized robots integrated into a prosthesis to stimulate patients' muscles to give them the feeling that their prosthetic fingers and hands were moving like a real limb. "They were able to control their grasp function and how much they were opening the hand, to the same degree that someone with an intact hand would," said Hebert in an interview with CBC. "That ability to tap into the system where their brain is just using the information without them even consciously realizing it, is what's really exciting." The findings from the four-year study were published in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

Hebert is director of the Bionic Limbs for Improved Natural Control (BLINC) Lab, where she has brought together a collaborative team of University of Alberta researchers from the fields of medicine, rehabilitation, engineering and computing science-from undergraduate students to postdoctoral and faculty-to advance prosthetic care.

In 2017, she won a U of A Excellence in Leadership Award in recognition of her enthusiasm for innovation and learning and her dedication to leading the interdisciplinary drive for technology improvement in prosthetic care both here and around the globe.