The Plastic Surgery Foundation
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Grants We Funded

Grant applicants for the 2022 cycle requested a total of over $2.9 million dollars. The PSF Study Section subcommittees of Basic & Translational Research and Clinical Research evaluated 115 grant applications on the following topics:

The PSF awarded research grants totaling almost $550,000 to support 19 plastic surgery research proposals.

ASPS/PSF leadership is committed to continuing to provide high levels of investigator-initiated research support to ensure that plastic surgeons have the needed research resources to be pioneers and innovators in advancing the practice of medicine.

Research Abstracts

Search The PSF database to have easy access to full-text grant abstracts from past PSF-funded research projects 2003 to present. All abstracts are the work of the Principal Investigators and were retrieved from their PSF grant applications. Several different filters may be applied to locate abstracts specific to a particular focus area or PSF funding mechanism.

Controlling Peripheral Nerve Signal Transmission with Light

Principal Investigator
Sahil Kapur MD


University of Wisconsin-Madison (Board of Regents University of Wisconsin System)

Funding Mechanism
Research Fellowship

Focus Area
Peripheral Nerve

Peripheral nerve injuries and diseases are a major cause of chronic pain conditions and muscle hyperactivity. The pathology is usually due to aberrant signal transmission along sensory or motor nerve fibers. Better control over peripheral nerve signal transmission can lead to better management of peripheral nerve injuries, chronic pain and muscle hyperactivity and thereby significantly improve public health. The recent birth of the field of optogenetics has opened up the possibility of controlling nerve signal transmission using light. This project aims to use optogenetic technology to understand how to reversibly block neural signals traveling from the central nervous system to the peripheral nervous system and vice versa. This understanding will establish the necessary building blocks that will facilitate the development of an implantable optical nerve cuff device. This device could potentially allow one to reversibly block nerve conduction with light alleviating pain and muscle hyperactivity. Preliminary EMG data from our lab demonstrates that we can reversibly stimulate or block peripheral nerve signal transmission using specific wavelengths of light. The project has a high likelihood of success because it represents a strong partnership among the fields of neuroscience, biomedical engineering and plastic surgery. The key personnel involved offer expertise in the areas of neural signal processing, microfabrication, peripheral nerve anatomy, physiology and surgery. A successful outcome could provide plastic surgeons with an accurate and precise tool to reversibly block peripheral nerve signal transmission. This tool will help promote a better understanding of nerve disease processes, chronic pain and muscle hyperactivity and therefore significantly impact public health and advance the field of peripheral nerve surgery.

Sahil Kuldip Kapur, MD majored in electrical and computer engineering with a focus in digital signal processing and microfabrication at Cornell University. During his undergraduate studies, Dr. Kapur participated in multiple research projects involving fabricate microchannels and microelectrode devices. During his residency training program in plastic surgery at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, he studied the principles of reconstructing human tissue.