Sudarshan Dayanidhi, PT, PhD

Sudarshan Dayanidhi, PT, PhD

Research Scientist
Assistant Professor
Interested in this profile?

About Me

Developmental injuries such as those of either the central or peripheral nervous system have a significant impact on the function of the musculoskeletal system. They negatively affect childhood growth, quality of life, and the ability of these children to actively participate in their environment. Over the past 20 years I have worked both clinically as a pediatric physical therapist and as a researcher to understand musculoskeletal development and its dysfunction due to injuries to the nervous system at birth. To better enable me in this endeavor I have sought diverse training in pediatric physical therapy, mechanical engineering and biomechanics. My doctoral work in neuroscience, postdoctoral work in muscle physiology and metabolism are all related to childhood development. My current research focuses on:

  • A) The role of muscle stem cells dysfunction in impaired musculoskeletal growth in children with cerebral palsy and
  • B) The contribution of altered muscle metabolism to increased energy expenditure in children with cerebral palsy.


Shirley Ryan AbilityLab

355 East Erie

Chicago, IL 60611

Education & Training



    2007 - 2012
    Ph.D., Biokinesiology, University of Southern California
    2007 - 2010
    M.S., Mechanical Engineering, University of Southern California
    2000 - 2003
    M.S., Pediatric Physical Therapy, Drexel University
    1995 - 1999
    B.Sc., Physical Therapy, University of Mumbai
    Postdoctoral Fellowship


    2012 - 2015
    Postdoctoral Fellowship, Muscle Physiology, University of California, San Diego

Recent Publications

Energetics of walking in individuals with cerebral palsy and typical development, across severity and age: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
Nardon M, Ruzzante F, O'Donnell L, Adami A, Dayanidhi S, Bertucco M
Gait & posture
doi: 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2021.09.190
Skeletal muscle maximal mitochondrial activity in ambulatory children with cerebral palsy.
Dayanidhi S, Buckner EH, Redmond RS, Chambers HG, Schenk S, Lieber RL
Developmental medicine and child neurology
doi: 10.1111/dmcn.14785
Stretch-induced satellite cell deformation incontracturedmuscles in children with cerebral palsy.
Dykstra PB, Dayanidhi S, Chambers HG, Lieber RL
Journal of biomechanics
doi: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2021.110635
Walking Exercise Therapy Effects on Lower Extremity Skeletal Muscle in Peripheral Artery Disease.
McDermott MM, Dayanidhi S, Kosmac K, Saini S, Slysz J, Leeuwenburgh C, Hartnell L, Sufit R, Ferrucci L
Circulation research
doi: 10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.121.318242
Early death of ALS-linked CHCHD10-R15L transgenic mice with central nervous system, skeletal muscle, and cardiac pathology.
Ryan ÉB, Yan J, Miller N, Dayanidhi S, Ma YC, Deng HX, Siddique T
doi: 10.1016/j.isci.2021.102061
Conference report on contractures in musculoskeletal and neurological conditions.
Nuckolls GH, Kinnett K, Dayanidhi S, Domenighetti AA, Duong T, Hathout Y, Lawlor MW, Lee SSM, Magnusson SP, McDonald CM, McNally EM, Miller NF, Olwin BB, Raghavan P, Roberts TJ, Rutkove SB, Sarwark JF, Senesac CR, Vogel LF, Walter GA, Willcocks RJ, Rymer WZ, Lieber RL
Muscle & nerve
doi: 10.1002/mus.26845
Does a Reduced Number of Muscle Stem Cells Impair the Addition of Sarcomeres and Recovery from a Skeletal Muscle Contracture? A Transgenic Mouse Model.
Dayanidhi S, Kinney MC, Dykstra PB, Lieber RL
Clinical orthopaedics and related research
doi: 10.1097/CORR.0000000000001134
Decrease in muscle contraction time complements neural maturation in the development of dynamic manipulation.
Dayanidhi S, Kutch JJ, Valero-Cuevas FJ
The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience
doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1968-13.2013
Developmental improvements in dynamic control of fingertip forces last throughout childhood and into adolescence.
Dayanidhi S, Hedberg A, Valero-Cuevas FJ, Forssberg H
Journal of neurophysiology
doi: 10.1152/jn.00320.2013
Polarization gating enables sarcomere length measurements by laser diffraction in fibrotic muscle.
Young KW, Dayanidhi S, Lieber RL
Journal of biomedical optics
doi: 10.1117/1.JBO.19.11.117009
Reduced skeletal muscle satellite cell number alters muscle morphology after chronic stretch but allows limited serial sarcomere addition.
Kinney MC, Dayanidhi S, Dykstra PB, McCarthy JJ, Peterson CA, Lieber RL
Muscle & nerve
doi: 10.1002/mus.25227
Skeletal muscle fiber-type specific succinate dehydrogenase activity in cerebral palsy.
Zogby AM, Dayanidhi S, Chambers HG, Schenk S, Lieber RL
Muscle & nerve
doi: 10.1002/mus.25379

Honors & Awards

  • GCMAS Best Paper Award
    Best paper in the 24th annual meeting of the Gait and Clinical Movement Analysis Society (GCMAS), 2014
  • Gayle G. Arnold Award for Excellence
    Best paper in the 67th annual meeting of the American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine (AACPDM), 2013
  • Neuromuscular Plasticity Scholar
    Invited Poster at University of Florida Neuromuscular Plasticity Symposium, 2011

Professional Affiliations

  • Member
    American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine, 2013

Research Interests

  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Satellite Cells
  • Mitochondria
  • Pediatric Physical Therapy
  • Stem Cells

Selected Grants

  • National Institutes of Health
    R03 HD086585-01, 2015 - 2017

My Lab

Pediatric Muscle Physiology Lab

We study muscle stem cells in impaired musculoskeletal growth and muscle metabolism in children with cerebral palsy.

view lab

Work History

  • 2015 - Present
    Research Scientist
    Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL
  • 2012 - 2015
    Postdoctoral Research Associate
    Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Diego, CA
  • 2007 - 2012
    Graduate Assistant
    Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
  • 2003 - 2007
    Physical Therapist
    Motion Analysis Lab, Shriners Hospitals for Children, Philadelphia, PA