Alex Breen

BSc (Hons), MSc, PhD, MIPEM - Postdoctoral Research Fellow and Technology Lead for Quantitative Fluoroscopy

Alex is responsible for the biomechanical and computational processes involved in the college’s Quantitative Fluoroscopy (QF) system, as well as radiation protection. He supervises and trains collaborative researchers and PhD students in the analysis of spine kinematics using this system. He is also responsible for the maintenance, organisation, security and storage of all QF data as well of the fluoroscopic systems themselves.

Biography

Alex Breen graduated from Exeter University with a Degree in Physics with medical applications in 2005. In 2007 he joined the AECC University College’s Centre for Biomechanics Research (CBR) where he has been working in research groups investigating the biomechanics of the spine. This has mainly involved developing, sourcing, maintaining, upgrading, validating and modifying image processing programs for spinal imaging analysis for research and commercialisation.  At the same time Alex undertook his MSc (part time) in Medical Physics, followed by a PhD (full time) in Prosthetics and Biomechanics, while continuing to support doctoral and post-doctoral researchers in the centre.

Current Activity

Alex is responsible for the biomechanical and computational processes involved in the college’s Quantitative Fluoroscopy (QF) system, as well as radiation protection.  He supervises and trains collaborative researchers and PhD students in the analysis of spine kinematics using this system.  He is also responsible for the maintenance, organisation, security and storage of all QF data as well of the fluoroscopic systems themselves.  

Alex is a fellow of the Chiropractic Academy for Research Leadership (CARL), an international fellowship for the accelerated development of early career researchers, in close collaboration with internationally recognised research leaders.  The CARL Program is designed to move beyond funding/support for any one particular research project to develop a critical mass of talented researchers in chiropractic related topics.

Alex’s current work also involves combining QF and surface electromyography of the lumbar spine as well as the construction of individualised dynamic mathematical models of intervertebral loading based on QF and 3-D MRI imaging. 

Area of Interest

Musculoskeletal Research, Medical Physics, Spine, Biomechanics and Prosthetics.

Qualifications

  • BSc (Hons) Physics with medical applications
  • MSc Medical Physics, PhD Prosthetics and Biomechanics
  • Certified radiation protection supervisor.

 Membership

  • Chiropractic Academy for Research Leadership (Fellow)
  • Society for Back Pain Research (Member)
  • Bournemouth University Centre of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (Visiting Member)
  • Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (Member)
  • Pain Action and Intelligence Research Network (Member).

Research

  • Clinical relevance of dynamic lumbar intervertebral motion sharing. (National Institute of Health Research)
  • Estimation of in vivo intervertebral loading during motion using fluoroscopic and magnetic resonance imaging informed finite element models. (Chiropractic Research Council)
  • Evaluation of residual limb movement of unilateral amputees within the prosthetic socket (Bournemouth University)
  • Minimal detectable change in intervertebral kinematic measures in human subjects (European Council for Chiropractic Research Excellence)
  • Comparison of intervertebral rotation centrodes in the cervical spines of patients with nonspecific neck pain and healthy controls (Institute for Musculoskeletal Research and Clinical Implementation)
  • Effects of spinal electrical muscle activation on lumbar spine intervertebral motion sharing (Institute for Musculoskeletal Research and Clinical Implementation)
  • Effects of a skinsuit to simulate gravitational forces in microgravity environments on lumbar intervertebral kinematics (Kings College London and European Space Agency)

Publications

du Rose A, Breen Ax, Breen A. Relationships between muscle electrical activity and the control of inter-vertebral motion during a forward bending task Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology (Accepted), available online: 12-SEP-2018 DOI:10.1016/j.jelekin.2018.08.004

Breen Ax, Hemming R, Mellor F, Breen A,. Intra-subject repeatability of in vivo intervertebral motion parameters using quantitative fluoroscopy. Medical Engineering & Physics (Submitted June 2018)

Breen Ax; Mellor F, Breen A,. Aberrant intervertebral motion in patients with treatment-resistant nonspecific low back pain: a retrospective cohort study and control comparison. European Spine Journal (June 2018) DOI: 10.1007/s00586-018-5666-1

Adams, J., Kawchuk, G., Breen, Ax., De Carvalho, D., Eklund, A., Fernandez, M., Funabashi, M., Holmes, M.M., Johansson, M.S., de Luca, K., Moore, C., Page, I., Pohlman, K.A., Swain, M.S., Wong, A.Y.L., Hartvigsen J. Leadership and capacity building in international chiropractic research: introducing the chiropractic academy for research leadership (CARL).Chiropractic & manual therapies, 2018 26(1), p.5. DIO: 10.1186/s12998-018-0173-3

Meakin J, Zanjani-pour S, Breen Ax and Breen A. Estimation of in vivo inter-vertebral loading during motion using fluoroscopic and magnetic resonance image informed finite element models. Journal of Biomechanics 2017 DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2017.09.025

Breen A, Breen Ax. Uneven intervertebral motion sharing is related to disc degeneration and is greater in patients with chronic, non-specific low back pain: an in vivo, cross-sectional cohort comparison of intervertebral dynamics using quantitative fluoroscopy. European Spine Journal. 2017 Aug 16:1-9. DOI: 10.1007/s0058

Breen A, Breen Ax, Mellor F, du Rose A, Bentman S. Control of intervertebral Motion: A Critical Element of Spine Control and a Target for Treatment. Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy (in press).

Breen Ax., Breen A.: Accuracy and repeatability of quantitative fluoroscopy for the measurement of sagittal plane translation and finite centre of rotation in the lumbar spine. Medical Engineering & Physics April 2016 DOI: 10.1016/j.medengphy.2016.03.009

Breen Ax., Dupac M., Osborne N.: Attainment rate as a surrogate indicator of the intervertebral neutral zone length in lateral bending: An in vitro proof of concept study. Chiropractic and Manual Therapies 10/2015; 23(1); DOI:10.1186/s12998-015-0073-8

Mellor F, Breen Ax: Ionizing radiation exposure and the development of intervertebral disc degeneration - No case to answer. The spine journal: official journal of the North American Spine Society 03/2013; 13(3):224-6. DOI:10.1016/j.spinee.2012.07.039

van Loon I., Mellor F., Breen Ax: Accuracy and repeatability of sagittal translation of lumbar vertebrae in vitro and in vivo using quantitative fluoroscopy. Clinical Chiropractic 12/2012; DOI:10.1016/j.clch.2012.09.001

Breen A., Teyhen D., Mellor F., Breen Ax., Wong K.W.N, Deitz A.: Measurement of Intervertebral Motion Using Quantitative Fluoroscopy: Report of an International Forum and Proposal for Use in the Assessment of Degenerative Disc Disease in the Lumbar Spine. Advances in Orthopedics, 2012(3):802350; 05/2012; DOI:10.1155/2012/802350

Contact Details

Phone: 01202 436 369

Email: alexbreen@aecc.ac.uk

Twitter: https://twitter.com/alexbreen83

Google Scholar: https://scholar.google.co.uk/citations?user=mKInj6EAAAAJ&hl=en 

Publons: https://publons.com/author/1279487/alexander-breen#profile

Mendely: https://www.mendeley.com/profiles/alexander-breen/ 

Linked-In:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/alexander-breen-39628133/ 

Bournemouth University Staff: https://staffprofiles.bournemouth.ac.uk/display/alexbreen

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