Dr. Nicholas Au Yong is an Assistant Professor of Neurosurgery at Emory University. Dr. Au Yong’s clinical interests focus on neuromodulation for individuals with traumatic brain and spinal cord injury. More specifically, his research works with individuals with cervical spinal cord injuries. These individuals’ injuries have led to abnormal function of their phrenic nerve, which controls the diaphragm. These patients are therefore ventilator dependent. His studies, which will use multiple cutting-edge techniques, including optogenetics, will aim to improve the efficiency of nerve transmission by developing phrenic sympathetic stimulation to healthy neuromuscular junctions. Dr. Au Yong’s goal is to develop and utilize neuromodulation to restore motor control and homeostatic regulation in these individuals and thus reduce their ventilator dependence.
Dr. Yong received his undergraduate degree in electrical engineering and his master’s degree in biomedical engineering from University of Rochester. After receiving his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Drexel University, he completed his residency in Neurological Surgery at the University of California, Los Angeles.