2009年02月26日

Neuromotor prosthics

Brain-machine interfaces are a promising approach for treating parelysis due to spinal cord injury, by reroutting control signals from the brain to the muscles. Previous work showed that monkeys can be traibed to move robotic arms using signals from electrodes inplated in the brain.

Now it is reported that monkeys can learn move a temporariky paralysed wrist using signals artificially routed from single neurons in the brain that had not previously been associated with that movement. This may have significant implications for future design of blain-machine interfaces, which have tradidionally relied on the activity of dedecated populations of nurons.

### DataBace ###
nature Vol.456 545-674 Issue no.7222 4 December 2008
Letter p.639/Direct control of paralysed muscles by cortical neurons/ C T Moritz et al. (University of Washington)


A potential treatment for paralysis resulting from pinal cord injury is to route control signals from the brain around the injury by artifical connections. Such signals could then control electrical stimulation of muscles, thereby restoring volitional movement to paralysed limbs.

In perviously separate experiments, activi of motor cortex neurons related to actual or imagined movements has been used to control computer cursors and robotic arms, and
paralysed muscles have been actvated by functional electrical stimulation.

Here we show that Macaca nomestrina monkeys can directly control stimulation of suscles using the activity of neurons in the motorcortex, thereby restoring global-derected move - mens to a transienty paralysd arm.

Moreover, neurons could control functional stimulation equally well regardless of any previous association to movement, a finding that considerably expands the source of control signals for brain-machine interface.

Monkeys learned to use these artificial connections fromcortical cells to muscles to generate bidirectional wrist torques, and controlled multiple neuron-muscle pairs simultaneously.

Such direct transforms from cortical activity to muscle stimulation could be implemented by autonomous electronic circuitry, creating a relatively natural neuroprosthesis.

These results are the first demonstration that direct artificial connection between cortical cells and muscles cancompensate for interrupted physiological pathways and restore volitional control of movement to paralysed limbs.

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