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Contact Details

Phone
+64 3 470 9337
Email
divya.adhia@otago.ac.nz
Position
Senior Research Fellow
Department
Department of Surgical Sciences (Dunedin)
Qualifications
BPhty MPhty (Manual Therapy) PhD
Research summary
Neuromodulation for chronic pain, cognition, tinnitus, mood disorders, stroke
Teaching
NEUR 453 Applied Human Neuroscience
Memberships
  • Associate Editor: Frontiers in Audiology
  • Infraslow Neurofeedback (ISF) Associates
  • Committee member for the Bachelor of Medical Sciences Honours Programme, Otago Medical School
  • Pain at Otago Research Theme
  • Otago Pain Mechanisms and Neuromodulation (OPaMeN)
  • BRAI3N Group: Brain Research consortium for Advanced Innovative and Interdisciplinary Neuromodulation
  • Brain Health and Research Centre (BHRC)
  • Brain Research New Zealand
  • Australasian Brain Stimulation Society
  • New Zealand Pain Society
  • Australian Pain Society
  • Graduate Women Otago
  • Indian Association of Physiotherapists

Research

I am an early career researcher with specific interests in the identification of cortical targets using electrical activity of the brain (Electroencephalography) and its treatment using non-invasive neuromodulation techniques, such as neurofeedback and transcranial electrical stimulation, in a variety of disorders with thalamocortical dysrhythmia including: chronic pain, mild cognitive Impairment and early Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, tinnitus, anxiety, depression, and reward-deficiency syndromes.

Our Brai3n research group is an international research group that follows the same philosophy and has the same mission using functional imaging and neuromodulation to study how the brain works.

Visit the Brai3n website

Current projects

Chronic Pain

  1. Non-invasive neuromodulation (transcranial electrical stimulation and neurofeedback) for chronic low back pain, and fibromyalgia (Leading as PI) in collaboration with Professor Dirk De Ridder (Neurosurgery), Dr Ramakrishnan Mani (Physiotherapy), Professor John Reynolds (Anatomy) and Professor Sven Vanneste (University of Texas)
  2. Brain responses in individuals with chronic musculoskeletal pain (Low back pain, Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Fibromyalgia): Collaboration with Dr Mani, Professor De Ridder, and Dr Rajesh Katare (Physiology) as a co-PI

Alzheimer’s Disease

Effect of novel high-definition transcranial noise stimulation and theta-gamma stimulation in individuals with early Alzheimer’s disease: Leading as PI in collaboration with Professor Dirk De Ridder, Dr Nick Cutfield (Medicine), and Professor Sven Vanneste (University of Texas).

Tinnitus

Psychedelics and TES for treating functional connectivity problems in individuals with tinnitus: Leading as co-PI in collaboration with Professor De Ridder, Professor Paul Glue (Psychological Medicine), Associate Professor Bruce Russel (Pharmacy), Associate Professor Yiwen Zheng (Pharmacology), Professor Paul Smith (Pharmacology), Associate Professor Grant Searchfield (University of Auckland), and Professor Sven Vanneste (Trinity College Dublin).

Advance EEG analysis for pain, tinnitus, obesity, and depression

Using artificial intelligence techniques in collaboration with Associate Professor Zhiyi Huang (Computer Science), Associate Professor Jeremiah Deng (Information Sciences), Professor Dirk De Ridder, Professor Paul Glue, Professor Patrick Manning, and Dr Ramakrishnan Mani.

Depression / Internalizing disorders

TES for treating functional connectivity problems in individuals with depression: Collaboration with Professor De Ridder and Professor Glue as AI.

Neural correlates of love

Identification of EEG signature of love using hyperscanning techniques: Collaboration with Professor De Ridder, and Dr Marco Congedo (University of Grenoble-Alpes, Grenoble, France).

Stroke (ESTART trial)

Intermittent theta burst transcranial stimulation of motor cortex to augment rehabilitation: Collaboration with Professor Reynolds (Anatomy), Dr Cutfield (Medicine), Professor Hale (Physiotherapy) and Professor De Ridder and Professor Denise Taylor (Auckland University of Technology) as an AI.

Student supervision

PhD students:

  • Jerin Mathew: Neurofeedback intervention to modulate knee osteoarthritic pain experience
  • Tyson Perez: Infraslow neurofeedback for internalizing disorders
  • William Pitts: Exploring psychedelics for treatment of tinnitus

Masters’ students:

  • Sophie Smeele: Exploring novel neuromodulation techniques for treatment of tinnitus
  • Cindy van Sleeuwen: Neuromodulation for generalized anxiety disorder

Honors students:

  • Nathaniel Hutchinson-Wong: High-definition transcranial grey noise stimulation for treatment of major depressive disorder
  • Shivankar Nair: Exploring high-definition transcranial infraslow pink noise stimulation for treatment of early Alzheimer's disease
  • Lucy Anderson: Exploring novel neurofeedback technique for fibromyalgia

Summer students:

  • Angad Chauhan: Infraslow frequency brain activity and functional connectivity in Early Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Finn Whittington: Exploring high-definition multi-target stimulations for treatment of cognitive disorders

Additional details

Career achievements

2022

UORG, Exploring novel neurofeedback for chronic low back pain, $49,759 (co-PI)
HCO Charitable Trust, Neuromodulation for improving cognition, $29,300 (PI)
Dean’s Bequest fund, Novel network neuromodulation-cognition, $24,532 (PI)

2021

HRC Feasibility grant, Self-regulation training for people with knee osteoarthritis, $249,061 (AI)
BHRC, Philanthropy funding, Low back pain research, $560,000 (co-PI)
Lottery Health Research, Home-neuromodulation device, $49,039 (PI)
HCO Charitable Trust, Neuromodulation for depression, $29,854 (AI)
UORG, Brain stimulation in tinnitus, $47,873 (AI)
Brain Research NZ, Neuromodulation for Stroke, $75,027 (AI)
AMRF Jean Cathie Research Fund, Novel treatment for tinnitus, $74,803 (AI)

2020

HRC ERFG, Novel neuromodulation for chronic low back pain, $209,995 (PI)
BHRC, Trialling community-administered non-invasive burst stimulation to improve upper limb recovery following stroke, $209,995 (AI)

2019

UORG, Brain stimulation in early Alzheimer’s disease, $45,379 (PI)
Healthcare Otago Charitable Trust, Neuromodulation for pain, $27,083 (PI)
Dean’s Bequest Round, Neurofeedback for back pain, $20,311 (PI)
DSM Research Equipment, Purchase of high-density EEG, $49,240 (co-PI)

2018

University Teaching Development Grants, $9,413 (AI)

2002–2014

  • 2014 University of Otago Postgraduate Publishing Bursary Award, $7,500
  • 2011 University of Otago PhD Scholarship, $25,000/year for 3 years
  • 2010 University of Otago International Master’s Award, $13,000
  • 2008 Best Poster Award, All India Physiotherapy Conference, Mangalore, India
  • 2008 Best Outgoing Student, Bachelor of Physiotherapy, Manipal College of Allied Health Sciences, Manipal University, Karnataka, India
  • 2008 Distinction in Final year Bachelor of Physiotherapy University Examinations, Manipal University, Karnataka, India
  • 2007 First Rank and Distinction in Third year Bachelor of Physiotherapy, Manipal College of Allied Health Sciences, Manipal University, Karnataka, India
  • 2005 Distinction in First year Bachelor of Physiotherapy University Examinations, Manipal University, Karnataka, India
  • 2004 Distinction in Higher Secondary Certificate Examination, Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education, Mumbai, India
  • 2002 Distinction in Secondary Certificate Examination, Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher

Publications

Adhia, D. B., Mani, R., Turner, P., O'Leary, F., Hall, M., Reynolds, J. N. J., Vanneste, S., & De Ridder, D. (2024). High-definition transcranial infraslow pink noise stimulation for chronic low back pain: A pilot, safety, and feasibility randomised placebo-controlled trial. Proceedings of the New Zealand Pain Society (NZPS) Annual Scientific Meeting: Empowering Pain Management in New Zealand. Retrieved from https://www.nzps2024.nz/ Conference Contribution - Published proceedings: Abstract

Jagadish, A., Natarajan, M., Adhia, D. B., Kuppuswamy, A., Guddattu, V., & Solomon, J. M. (2024). Effect of high-definition transcranial direct current stimulation among late-subacute and chronic stroke survivors with fatigue: A randomized-controlled crossover trial protocol. MethodsX, 12, 102629. doi: 10.1016/j.mex.2024.102629 Journal - Research Article

Mani, R., Adhia, D. B., Awatere, S., Gray, A. R., Mathew, J., Wilson, L. C., Still, A., Jackson, D., Hudson, B., … De Ridder, D. (2024). Self-regulation training for people with knee osteoarthritis: A protocol for a feasibility randomised control trial (MiNT Trial). Frontiers in Pain Research, 4, 1271839. doi: 10.3389/fpain.2023.1271839 Journal - Research Other

Mathew, J., Perez, T. M., Adhia, D. B., De Ridder, D., & Mani, R. (2024). Is there a difference in EEG characteristics in acute, chronic, and experimentally induced musculoskeletal pain states? A systematic review. Clinical EEG & Neuroscience, 55(1), 101-120. doi: 10.1177/15500594221138292 Journal - Research Article

Anderson, L., De Ridder, D., Glue, P., Mani, R., & Adhia, D. (2023). Exploring novel effective connectivity neurofeedback training for treatment of fibromyalgia: A pilot randomised placebo-controlled study. In T. Milne, M. Anwar, L. Burga, H. Harcombe, M. Garelja, A. Middleton, D. C. Ribeiro, N. Fleming, K. Ogbuehi & A. Bahn (Eds.), Proceedings of the 268th Otago Medical School Research Society (OMSRS) Meeting: Masters/Honours/Postgraduate Diploma Student Speaker Awards. Dunedin, New Zealand: OMSRS. Retrieved from https://ourarchive.otago.ac.nz/handle/10523/12839 Conference Contribution - Published proceedings: Abstract

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