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Quadriplegic controls robotic arm via brain electrodes

rehabilitation robot paralyzed medicine brain

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#1 Orpheus

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 11:12 PM

It can be really easy to get jaded about news stories like this, especially since journalists often overhyped old technology and mixed speculation with reality, but this is the here-and-now -- at long last.

a2.jpg

This mobile robotic arm, controlled by two 4mmx4mm 100-electrode (each) implants in her motor cortex is bringing new life to a woman who has been paralyzed from the neck down. That's a far cry from the more common (equally worthy) motorized prostheses usually used for limb replacement, or the transducers that stimulate muscles in existing limbs after a nerve or spinal cord injury -- and the direct brain electrodes are said said to give it unprecedented smoothness and control

Paralysed woman's thoughts control robotic arm [BBC]

"High-performance neuroprosthetic control by an individual with tetraplegia" The Lancet, Early Online Publication, 17 December 2012
doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(12)61816-9

#2 RJDiogenes

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 07:29 PM

This is fantastic. We're in Steve Austin territory now. The next step will be to create a pressure-sensitive web in the artificial skin that can give feedback to the brain.  It won't be like real feeling-- at least not at first-- but it will allow people to know when they are touching something, how much pressure to apply et cetera.

And this won't be the only application for brain implants that can control technology remotely.
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#3 gsmonks

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 01:22 AM

Wow. I can't begin to imagine how this device will improve her quality of life.
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