School of Health

Associate Professor Michael Lee

Position: Associate Professor and Discipline Lead
Discipline: Physiotherapy


  • PhD in Medicine, University of New South Wales
  • Master of Physiotherapy, University of Queensland
  • Master of Chiropractic, Macquarie University
  • Bachelor of Science (Anatomy & Physiology), University of New South Wales

Teaching areas/interests

Neurological Physiotherapy, Neurorehabilitation, Neuroscience, Clinical Neurology, Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy and Research Methods

Professional associations/affiliations

  • Australian Physiotherapy Association
  • Australian Pain Society
  • Chiropractic Australia
  • Council of Physiotherapy Deans, Australia and New Zealand
  • Neuroimaging Society in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
  • International Society for Virtual Rehabilitation
  • Visiting Research Fellow, School of Biomedical Engineering, University of Technology Sydney

Research Interests

  • Clinical neurology
  • Clinical neurophysiology
  • Neurodegenerative disease (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, stroke etc)
  • Neurophysiological techniques - transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), peripheral nerve excitability techniques, electrical stimulation, H-reflex, electroencephalography (EEG) and magnetoencephalography (MEG)
  • Neurorehabilitation (spinal cord injury, stroke, peripheral neuropathy etc)
  • Chronic pain
  • Use of robotic and technology in rehabilitation
  • Sports medicine


2020 – Techcelerator, Most Technically Feasible Prototype Award, Faculty of Engineering and IT, University of Technology Sydney. “AI-based Exoskeleton for Upper Limb Rehabilitation”. Guo K, Wang L and Palayil J; Supervised by Su S and Lee M. ($12,500).

2020 – Research Equipment Fund, School of Health, Federation University. Lee M. ($6230).

2019 - Spinal Cure Research Grant. “Robot-assisted game-based rehabilitation program for upper limb function in people with spinal cord injuries: A feasibility study”. Quel de Oliveira C, Stubbs PW, McCambridge A, Lee M and Verhagen AP. ($22,000).

2018 - UTS Blue Sky Research Scheme, Faculty of Engineering & IT. “Upper limb stroke rehabilitation using electromyography functional connectivity analysis”. Su S, Carmichael M, Tipper J, Duffield R & Lee M. ($17,000)

2018 - UTS Blue Sky Research Scheme, Faculty of Engineering & IT. “Collaborative robots for versatile and affordable therapy in the clinic and the home”. Carmichael M, Lee M, Paul G and Aldini S. ($24,000)

2017 – UTS Blue Sky Research Scheme, Faculty of Engineering & IT. “Kinetics and physiology of human motion in stroke rehabilitation”. Su S, Carmichael M, Chai R, Duffield R and Lee M. ($15,000)

2017 - UTS Blue Sky Research Scheme, Faculty of Engineering & IT, UTS.  “Next Generation of Miniaturized Wearable Millimeter-Wave Scanners for Instant Health Care Check”. Yang Y, Zhu F, Lee M and Dutkiewic E. ($18,000)

2016 - Grant-in-aid, Motor Neurone Disease Research Institute of Australia, “Dissecting the mechanisms underlying muscle fatigue in ALS using acute and cumulative resistance exercise”. Lee M (Chief Investigator). ($98,758.50)

2016 - International Cooperation - FAPESB/Brazil. “Knee Osteoarthritis: Effects of adding neuromodulation to exercises on pain, function and cortical representation of the quadriceps”. Baptista A and Lee M (*USD $56,150.00)

2015 - Nina Buscombe Award. Motor Neuron Disease Victoria ($3000)

2015 - The Peter Chandra Motor Neuron Disease Research Gift Grant, The Brain & Mind Centre, University of Sydney. Philanthropy Research Grant. ($45,000).

2012-2014 - Spinal Cord Injury and Related Neurological Conditions Research Grants Program, NSW Office for Medical Research. Lee M (Chief Investigator). ($298,735.00)

2012 - Bill Gole Motor Neuron Disease Postdoctoral Fellowship, Motor Neurone Disease Research Institute of Australia. “Mechanisms underlying exercise-induced neuroprotection in patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)” Lee M (Chief Investigator). ($225,000).

2011 - Brain Foundation. “Utilising plasticity to drive functional recovery after spinal cord injury”. Lee M (Chief Investigator). ($44,000)

2010 - Hamblin New Zealand Chiropractic Research Trust Fund. Haavik H and Lee M ($10,000)


  • Nina Buscombe Award. Motor Neuron Disease Victoria, 2015.
  • Distinction in Scholarship, Journal of Neurophysiology, The American Physiological Society, 2015.
  • Travel scholarship, Taipei Medical University. 2015.
  • Applied Spinal Cord Injury Research Fellow, New South Wales Office for Medical Research, 2012-2014.
  • Australian Research Council (ARC) Human Motor Control PhD Scholarship, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, 2004-2008.
  • University of New South Wales Postgraduate Travel Grant, 2007.  
  • Australasian Winter Conference on Brain Research Travel Grant, Otago University, 2006.
  • Australian Neuroscience Society Travel Grant, 2005.


Book Chapters

Huynh W, Lee M and Kiernan MC. (2020). Chapter 19 - Neurorehabilitation approaches for disorders of the Peripheral Nervous System, Oxford Textbook of Neurorehabilitation, 2nd Ed. (Editors: Volker Dietz and Nick Ward). Oxford University Press. ISBN: 978-0-1988-2495-4.

Lee M. (2020). Chapter 6 – Muscular System, in Applied Anatomy & Physiology: an interdisciplinary approach, 1st Ed. (Editor: Zerina Tomkins). Elsevier Australia. ISBN: 978-0-7295-4319-4.

Huynh W, Lee M and Kiernan MC. (2015). Chapter 19 - Neurorehabilitation approaches for disorders of the Peripheral Nervous System, Oxford Textbook of Neurorehabilitation, 1st Ed. (Editors: Volker Dietz and Nick Ward). Oxford University Press. ISBN: 978-0-19-967371-1

Journal articles

Kingett M, Holt K, Niazi IK, Nedergaard RW, Lee M and Haavik H (2019). “Increased voluntary activation of the elbow flexors following a single session of spinal manipulation in a subclinical neck pain population”. Brain Sciences, 9, 136, p1-14.

Lee M & McCambridge AB (2018). “Clinimetrics: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Functional Rating Scale-revised (ALSFRS-R)”. Journal of Physiotherapy, 64:269-270.

Adams J, Lee M and Peng W (2018). “Critical review of complementary and alternative medicine use in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: prevalence and users’ profile, decision-making, information seeking, and disclosure in the face of a lack of efficacy”. Neurodegenerative Diseases, 18:225-232.

Lee M (2018). “Robotic therapy: Giving physiotherapists the “upper hand” in neurorehabilitation?”. Inspire, Issue 010 Frontier Edition. Research Australia.

Luz-Santos C, Camatti JR, Paixao AB, Nunes Sa K, Montoya P, Lee M and Baptista AF (2017). “Additive effect of tDCS combined with peripheral electrical stimulation to an exercise program in pain control in knee osteoarthritis: Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial”. Trials, 18:609.

Lee M, Meng D, Kiernan MC and BW Johnson (2016). “Exploring motor imagery and motor cortical function in ALS using magnetoencephalography”. Clinical Neurophysiology, 127(3); e12.

Lee M, Kiernan MC, Macefield, VG, Lee, BB and Lin C S-Y. (2015) “Short-term peripheral nerve stimulation ameliorates axonal dysfunction after spinal cord injury”. Journal of Neurophysiology, 113:3209-3218.

Simon NG, Lee M, Bae J, Mioshi E, Lin C S-Y, Vucic S, Swash M, Burke D and Kiernan MC. (2015). “Dissociated leg muscle involvement in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis”. Journal of Neurology, Vol. 262 (6), pp1424-1432.

Simon NG, Lin, C S-Y, Lee M, Howells J, Vucic S, Burke D, Kiernan MC. (2015). “Segmental motoneuronal dysfunction is a feature of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis”. Clinical Neurophysiology. 126: 828-836.

Simon NG, Lin, Lee M, Howells J, Vucic S, Lin C S-Y, Kiernan MC. (2013). “Pathophysiological changes in the H-reflex pathway in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis”. Neurology, Vol. 80 (Supplement 7, P07.075).

Pickering H, Lee M, Moseley GL, Minei P, Lin C S-Y. (2012). Sensory disturbances evoked by immobilization of an experimentally inflamed limb”. Clinical Neurophysiology, 123(7); e71-e72.

Lee M, Gandevia, SC, Hinder MR and Carroll TJ. (2010). “The ipsilateral motor cortex contributes to cross-limb transfer of ballistic motor learning”. Journal of Physiology, 588.1, 201-212.

Lee M, Gandevia, SC and Carroll TJ. (2009). “Unilateral strength training increases voluntary activation of the opposite untrained limb”. Clinical Neurophysiology, 120, 802-808.

Carroll TJ, Barton J, Hsu M and Lee M. (2009). “The effect of strength training on the force of twitches evoked by corticospinal stimulation in humans”. Acta Physiologica, 197, 161-173.

Lee M, Gandevia SC and Carroll TJ. (2009). “Short term strength training does not change voluntary activation”. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 41(7), 1452-1460.

Lee M, Gandevia SC and Carroll TJ. (2008). “Cortical voluntary activation can be reliably measured in human wrist extensors using transcranial magnetic stimulation”. Clinical Neurophysiology, 119,1130-1138.

Carroll TJ, Lee M, Hsu M and Sayde J. (2008). “Unilateral practice of a ballistic movement causes bilateral increases in performance and corticospinal excitability”. Journal of Applied Physiology, 104, 1656-1664.

Lee M and Carroll TJ. (2007). “Cross education: Possible mechanisms for the contralateral effects of unilateral resistance training”. Sports Medicine, 37(1), 1-14.

Carroll TJ, Herbert RD, Munn J, Lee M and Gandevia SC. (2006). “Mini Review. Contralateral effects of unilateral strength training: Evidence and possible mechanisms”. Journal of Applied Physiology, 101, 1514-1522.

Lee M and Carroll TJ. (2005). “The amplitude of Mmax in human wrist flexors varies during different muscle contractions despite constant posture”. Journal of Neuroscience Method, 149, 95-100.