DPT Faculty Research Areas

Exercise and Cardiometabolic Health

Faculty Investigator  
W. Todd Cade, PT, PhD

The overall goal of our laboratory is to study innovative and precision rehabilitation strategies to enhance cardiometabolic health.

Neurological Rehabilitation

Faculty Investigator 
Jody Feld, PT, DPT, PhD

Katherine “Kat” Morgan.

Dr. Feld’s research seeks to inform assessments and interventions for clinicians working with individuals post-stroke and in the geriatric population. Furthermore, she aims to provide clinically relevant prediction tools for neurologic and geriatric populations. Focus areas include physical resiliency, motor-cognitive dual-task paradigms, balance, gait, physical activity monitoring, neuroimaging, and neuromodulation. 

Movement Matters for Adults with Multiple Comorbid Conditions and Medical Complexity

Faculty Investigator 
Amy M. Pastva, PT, MA, PhD

Dr. Pastva has two decades of experience as a physical therapist and an academician and has participated as a clinician-scientist at the Principle Investigator (PI) or Co-Investigator (Co-I) levels on foundation and federally-funded projects where she developed care transition and rehabilitative strategies aimed at positively influencing physiological mechanisms of health and improving patient-centered outcomes of physical function and quality of life for adults with chronic and/or medically complex conditions such as heart failure, respiratory failure, cancer, and stroke.

Education Innovation Lab

Faculty Investigators
Kyle Covington, PT, DPT, PhD
Katie Myers, PT, DPT Jamie Greco, PT, DPT, EdD
Marcus Roll, PT, DPT Chad Cook, PT, MBA, PhD, FAPTA
Jody Feld, PT, DPT, PhD Kara Lardinois, PT, DPT

The Duke DPT Education Innovation Lab is a community of faculty scholars with a shared vision of advancing educational research in the pursuit of excellence in physical therapy education. We aim to be change agents in education, with research projects that investigate and answer critical questions that elevate the standards in crucial components of DPT education. Our work aims to translate educational research outcomes into the delivery of excellent educational experiences, preparing future clinicians who will truly transform society.

Neurobiology of Nervous System Damage and Recovery

Faculty Investigator
Timothy D. Faw, PT, DPT, PhD

Our translational research investigates the cellular and molecular underpinnings of nervous system damage and recovery, including testing novel interventions to improve outcomes. To do this, we utilize small animal models of clinically relevant nervous system injuries (spinal cord injury, stroke, traumatic brain injury) alongside clinical trials in human participants. We are specifically interested in the roles of neuroinflammation and rehabilitation in motor learning, myelin plasticity, and recovery of sensory and motor function after injury. 

Clinical Informatics and Data Science

Faculty Investigator
Maggie Horn, DPT, MSPH, PhD

Dr. Horn’s research agenda focuses on understanding the multifactorial experience in patients with musculoskeletal pain by leveraging secondary data from claims, administrative, clinical outcomes, and registry data sources. She is particularly interested in developing sustainable and scalable processes to collect patient-reported outcome measures and clinical data through the EHR to undertake research and quality improvement projects and develop data analytics platforms. 

Orthopaedic Sports Medicine

Faculty Investigator
Laura Pietrosimone PT, DPT, PhD

Dr. Pietrosimone’s research focuses on lower extremity biomechanics and physical activity in orthopaedic and sports medicine populations. Specifically, her work seeks to advance translational science by developing innovative rehabilitation strategies that address the lasting consequences of acute and chronic lower extremity injury to promote joint health and optimize patient quality of life.