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posted by janrinok on Friday November 15 2019, @07:46PM   Printer-friendly
from the removing-it-is-a-different-problem dept.

Arthur T Knackerbracket has found the following story:

By electrically stimulating nerves, neuromodulation therapies can reduce epileptic seizures, soothe chronic pain, and treat depression and a host of other health conditions without the use of conventional drugs like opioids.

Now, University of Wisconsin-Madison biomedical engineers and their collaborators have made a significant advance that could dramatically reduce the cost of neuromodulation therapy, increase its reliability and make it much less invasive.

With a type of electrode that can be injected as a liquid and then cure in the body, the researchers have laid the groundwork for a new kind of neural interface system.

The researchers unveiled their creation, which they've dubbed the "injectrode," in a paper published online this week in the journal Advanced Healthcare Materials.

Today's neuromodulation treatments rely on surgically implanted devices that can cost up to six figures, require complex procedures to install, and often fail -- given that they're rigid devices attempting to mesh with soft biological tissue.

The researchers' system leverages an entirely new way of thinking.

"You can inject the liquid around the nerve, and it cures in the body to create a wired contact," says Kip Ludwig, a UW-Madison professor of biomedical engineering and neurological surgery. "Typical implants are really stiff, and so as the body moves, they wear and tear and break down. Our liquid cures, and the result is much closer to the normal elasticity of tissue. You can actually stretch it and increase its size 150 percent to 200 percent without losing its conductivity."

Journal Reference: James K. Trevathan, Ian W. Baumgart, Evan N. Nicolai, Brian A. Gosink, Anders J. Asp, Megan L. Settell, Shyam R. Polaconda, Kevin D. Malerick, Sarah K. Brodnick, Weifeng Zeng, Bruce E. Knudsen, Andrea L. McConico, Zachary Sanger, Jannifer H. Lee, Johnathon M. Aho, Aaron J. Suminski, Erika K. Ross, Jose L. Lujan, Douglas J. Weber, Justin C. Williams, Manfred Franke, Kip A. Ludwig, Andrew J. Shoffstall. An Injectable Neural Stimulation Electrode Made from an In‐Body Curing Polymer/Metal Composite. Advanced Healthcare Materials, 2019; 1900892 DOI: 10.1002/adhm.201900892

Original Submission

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  • (Score: 2) by ikanreed on Friday November 15 2019, @08:30PM

    by ikanreed (3164) on Friday November 15 2019, @08:30PM (#920785) Journal

    Unfair. This research may actually lead to some innovation.

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