Cullen School of Engineering


Dept. of Electrical & Computer Engineering
N308 Engineering Building 1
Houston, Texas 77004-4005
Phone: 713-743-4400
Fax: 713-743-4444
Department: ece [at] egr [dot] uh [dot] edu
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Dr. Jose Luis Contreras-Vidal

Professor of ECE and Biomedical Engineering

W 310 Engineering Building 1

Houston, Texas 77004-4005

Tel: 713-743-4429 | Fax: 713-743-4444

Email: jlcontreras-vidal [at] uh [dot] edu



  • Engineer's Degree in Electronics & Communications, Monterrey Institute of Technology (ITESM), Monterrey, Mexico
  • M.S. in Electrical Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO
  • Ph.D. in Cognitive and Neural Systems, Boston University, Boston, MA
  • Postdoctoral Fellow in Computational Motor Neuroscience, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
  • Human Frontiers Science Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Fribourg, Switzerland, Fribourg, Switzerland

Professional Experience


University of Maryland-College Park; Assistant (1999) and Associate (2005) Professor


Courses Taught at UH

  • ECE 5397/ECE 6397 Robotics in Healthcare
  • ECE 6397 Brain-Machine Interface Systems

Awards and Honors

  • Research and Development Award, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, 2011
  • President, International Graphonomics Society, 2013-2015
  • National Science Foundation Review Panel (Ad-hoc)
  • NIH 2011/10 ZRG1 BBBP-V (10) B: Small Business: Biobehavioral and Behavioral Processes across the Lifespan Study Section
  • NIH MFSR: Motor function, Speech and Rehabilitation Study section, 2006-2010
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (IEEE), Senior Member , 2008
  • Senior Research Scholar, City of Paris, France

Editorial Boards

  • Computers in Biology and Medicine (Editorial Board Member)

  • Neural Networks (Action Editor)

  • Frontiers in Neuroprosthetics (Review Editor)

  • International Journal of Mobile Human Computer Interaction (Editorial Review Board)

  • Human Movement Science (Guest Editor), 2012 Special Issue on Neuroscience of Fine Motor Control Across the Lifespan


Research Interests

  • Reverse engineering the brain

  • Innovating rehabilitation robotics

  • Utilizing neural interfaces as tools for reverse-translational studies of brain plasticity and brain-machine interaction/confluence

  • Neuroprosthetics and powered wearable exoskeletons

Funded Research

  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institutes of Child Health & Human Development, Program Grant P01 HD064653-01; Functions and Development of the Mirror Neuron System. PIs: Amanda Woodward (U. Chicago), Nathan Fox (U. Maryland), Jose L. Contreras-Vidal (U. Houston), Pier Ferrara (U. Parma, Italy); 9/10/10 - 6/30/2015 ($6,011,677).

  • National Science Foundation HCC/IIS-1064703; HCC: Medium: Collaborative Research: Improved Control and Sensory Feedback for Neuroprosthetics. PIs: Jose L. Contreras-Vidal (U. Houston), Brent Gillespie (U. Michigan), Marcie O’Malley (Rice U.) and Patricia Shewokis (Drexel U.); 07/11-06/14 ($1.2M).

  • National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) R01NS075889-01; Noninvasive neural decoding of walking PI: Contreras-Vidal; 07/2011-06/2015 ($1,332,380.00).

  • VA Merit Award 1RXDD0592-01; Developing a brain-machine interface for an ankle robot; PIs: Contreras-Vidal (U. Houston); Larry Forrester (U. Maryland School of Medicine & VA-Baltimore); 07/01/2011-06-30-2013; ($190,020).

  • National Institute on Aging (AG); PES-5 (Pilot subproject in P30 AG028747-06); A High-Density Electroencephalography (EEG) Neural Decoding Study of Dynamical Cortical Mapping of Gait in Humans After Stroke; PI: Contreras-Vidal (U. Houston; Co-PI: Forrester (U. Maryland School of Medicine & VA-Baltimore); (P30 PI: Goldberg; U. Maryland School of Medicine); 10/1/2011-9/30/2013; ($38,000/year)

  • National Institute on Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS); National Robotics Initiative: Brain-Machine Interface Control of a Therapeutic Exoskeleton; PIs: Contreras-Vidal (UH), Marcie O'Malley (Rice) and Gerard Francisco (TIRR); 8/1/-2012-6/30/2016; ($1,173,601)

  • University of Maryland ADVANCE Program; "Your Brain on Dance" ; PIs: Karen Kohn Bradley (UMD) and Jose L Contreras-Vidal (UH); 5/1/2012 - 4/30/2013; ($20,000)

  • National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, R13 NS082045-01 PI: CONTRERAS-VIDAL, JOSE; 2013 International workshop on Clinical Brain-Neural Machine Interfaces to be held at The Methodist Hospital Research Institute on Feb 24-27, 2013, ($20,000)

  • National Science Foundation,  IIS-1313620; 2013 International Workshop on Clinical Brain-Neural Machine Interface Systems to be held at The Methodist Hospital Research Institute on Feb 24-27, 2013, ($18,152)

  • National Science Foundation, IIS-1302339; HCC: Medium: Collaborative Research: Neural Control of Powered Artificial Legs, in collaboration with Helen Huang; June 15, 2013-  May 31, 2017 ($1.2M)

  • Mission Connect - A TIRR Foundation; ($100,000). Gift to acquire a Rehab Rex robotic exoskeleton for brain-machine interface research.


Selected Publications

Selected Publications


    Bradberry TJ, Rong F. Contreras-Vidal JL (2009). Decoding center-out hand velocity from MEG signals during visuomotor adaptation. Neuroimage, 47(4): 1691-700.

  • Bradberry TJ, Gentili RJ, Contreras-Vidal JL (2010). Reconstructing three-dimensional hand movements from non-invasive electroencephalographic signals. Journal of Neuroscience. 30(9): 3432-7.

  • Swett BA, Contreras-Vidal JL, Birn R, Braun A. (2010). Neural substrates of graphomotor sequence learning: a combined fMRI and kinematic study. Journal of Neurophysiology. 103(6): 3366-77.

  • Rietschel JC, Goodman RN, King BR, Lo LC, Contreras-Vidal JL, Hatfield BD. (2011). Cerebral cortical dynamics and the quality of motor behavior during social evaluative challenge. Psychophysiology. 48(4): 479-87

  • Venkatakrishnan A, Banquet JP, Burnod Y, Contreras-Vidal JL (2011) Parkinson's disease differentially affects adaptation to gradual as compared to sudden visuomotor distortions. Human Movement Science, 30(4): 760-9. PMID: 21414678.

  • Rong F, Holroyd T, Husain FT, Contreras-Vidal JL, Horwitz B (2011). Task-specific modulation of human auditory evoked responses in a delayed-match-to-sample task. Front. Psychology, 2:85. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2011.00085, PMID: 21687454.

  • Gentili RJ, Bradberry TJ, Oh H, Hatfield BD, Contreras Vidal JL. (2011). Cerebral cortical dynamics during visuomotor transformation: Adaptation to a cognitive-motor executive challenge. Psychophysiology. 48(6): 813-24.

  • King BR, Kagerer FA, Harring JR, Contreras-Vidal JL, Clark, JE (2011). Multisensory adaptation of spatial-to-motor transformations in children with Developmental Coordination Disorder. Experimental Brain Research. 212(2): 257-65.

  • Presacco A, Goodman R, Forrester L, and Contreras-Vidal JL (2011). Neural decoding of walking from non-invasive, high-density electroencephalographic (EEG) signals. Journal of Neurophysiology, 106(4):1875-87, PMID: 21768121

  • Bradberry TJ, Verhagen Metman L, Contreras-Vidal JL, van den Munckhof P, Hosey LA, Thompson JLW, Schulz GM, Lenz F, Pahwa R, Lyons KE, Braun AR. (2011) Common and unique responses to dopamine agonist therapy and deep brain stimulation in Parkinson’s disease: an H2150 PET study. Brain Stimulation, in press.

  • Contreras-Vidal JL, Presacco A, Agashe H, Paek A. (2012). Restoration of whole body movement: toward a noninvasive brain-machine interface system. IEEE Pulse. 2012 Jan; 3(1):34-7.

  • Presacco A, Forrester LW, Contreras-Vidal JL. (2012). Decoding lower-limb intra and inter-limb coordination during treadmill walking from scalp EEG signals. IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, vol. 20 (2):212-9.

  • King BR, Oliveira MA, Contreras-Vidal JL, Clark JE. (2012) Development of state estimation explains improvements in sensorimotor performance across childhood.
    J Neurophysiol. 107(11):3040-9.

  • Bulea, T.C., Kilicarslan, A., Ozdemir, R., Paloski, W.H., Contreras-Vidal, J.L. (2013). Simultaneous Scalp Electroencephalography (EEG), Electromyography (EMG), and Whole-Body Segmental Inertial Recording for Multi-Modal Neural Decoding. J. Vis. Exp. (), e50602, doi:10.3791/50602 (2013).