Faculty & Staff


Sergiy Yakovenko Directory Photo

Sergiy Yakovenko

Assistant Professor
117 BMRC
Box: 9227




Assistant Professor
Human Performance - Exercise Physiology (SOM)

Assistant Professor
Centers for Neuroscience (SOM)


BS, Kharkiv National University, 1997
PhD, University of Alberta, 2004

The focus of our interdisciplinary research is to study the coordinated action of neural, muscular, and skeletal systems controlling goal-directed and stereotypic movements.

The neuro-musculo-skeletal (NMS) system evolved to control mechanical actions, e.g. walking, running, balancing and reaching. Since these and other common behaviors are produced by the integrated action of multiple components of the NMS system, investigating the details of this emergent organization of movement control is a major challenge. Our laboratory addresses this challenge with an interdisciplinary approach that combines multi-electrode recording and stimulation techniques with advanced computational tools in the field of neuromechanics and innovative methodology.

Besides the general question of understanding how the brain works we are working on the following specific topics:

-- What is the pattern of interactions between multiple redundant neuromechanical mechanisms involved in the control of movement?

-- What are the evolutionary constraints of neuromechanical organization?

-- What mechanisms are responsible for the way we acquire new motor skills?

-- How can we use the hierarchy and redundancy of control pathways to overcome movement deficits due to stroke and spinal cord injury?


A hierarchical perspective on rhythm generation for locomotor control.
Yakovenko S.
Prog Brain Res. 2011;188:151-66.

Sequential activation of motor cortical neurons contributes to intralimb coordination during reaching in the cat by modulating muscle synergies.
Yakovenko S, Krouchev N, Drew T.
J Neurophysiol. 2011 Jan;105(1):388-409

A motor cortical contribution to the anticipatory postural adjustments that precede reaching in the cat.
Yakovenko S, Drew T.
J Neurophysiol. 2009 Aug;102(2):853-74.