Navigation Links
Brown to host conference on advances in neurotechnology
Date:5/30/2008

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] Imagine being paralyzed, unable to move your arms or to walk again. An estimated four to five million Americans suffer from this debilitating situation. Or imagine being mostly blind, or mostly deaf. Conservatively, tens of millions of Americans are affected by these infirmities.

Now imagine being able to stand up and walk, to move your hands or arms enough to tap out an e-mail on a computer, or to see and hear again. These advances are no longer in the realm of imagination. They are real-life examples of bionic-like repairs scientists can make to the human body.

Like mechanics peering under a car's hood, researchers in the emerging field of neurotechnology are learning more about how the human central nervous system works. They understand more clearly how the brain sends signals that cause muscles to twitch and arms and legs to move. They are peering more intently into the inner workings of the eye and ear and are developing devices that can replicate broadly how they work.

The technologies they have created the implants, the probes, the electrical stimulators are benefiting real people now. Some of those people, and the scientists who helped them, will tell their stories at the Frontiers of Healthcare Conference, to be held June 9 from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Salomon Center for Teaching, located on the Brown University campus. The Division of Biology and Medicine at Brown University and Rep. Patrick J. Kennedy (D-RI) sponsor the conference, now in its fifth year. This year's theme is "Neurotechnology: From the Lab to Everyday Life." The $25 conference fee includes lunch.

There also will be a short press conference featuring Kennedy, the scientists and the individuals who have benefited from neurotechnology.

"Neurotechnology isn't science fiction it's here today," says John Donoghue, professor of neuroscience and engineering and director of the Brown Institute for Brain Science. "Devices that connect to the nervous system are already helping those with paralysis to move again, those with blindness to see and those with deafness to hear."

This year's format will pair patients and specialists in the following disciplines: cochlear (ear) implants and retinal (eye) prosthetics; spinal cord injuries; deep brain stimulation; and paralyzed rehabilitation. The moderator is Joe Palca, science correspondent for National Public Radio.

"The scientific efforts to change human lives for the better will be demonstrated by this panel of scientists along with actual individuals who live with that science every day," said Eli Y. Adashi, M.D., dean of medicine and biological sciences at Brown. "That's where current research in the neurosciences stands today. It is obliterating boundaries between biology and technology."

Kennedy has introduced a bill the National Neurotechnology Initiative Act that aims to accelerate the development of new and safer treatments for Americans living with a brain-related illness, injury or disease.

"Tens of millions of Americans are suffering from a brain-related disorder," Kennedy noted. "The brain is too complex an organ to simply look at piece by piece, disease by disease. We need to study the whole brain. I believe by connecting and coordinating neuroscience research across federal agencies, eliminating duplication and creating greater efficiencies, we will improve the quality of our research and accelerate discoveries, thus saving lives."

The keynote address will be given by Col. Geoffrey Ling, M.D., a program manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and a professor and vice chair of the Department of Neurology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. Ling's research focuses on brain and spinal cord injuries, particularly those relevant to the military. His address is titled "Restoring the Injured Warfighter."

Donoghue will open the conference, outlining broadly what neurotechnology means and the latest advances in the field. Adashi and Kennedy will deliver welcoming remarks.

The panel discussion will consist of four interviews, moderated by Palca. They include:

Cochlear Implants and Retinal Prosthetics

  • Mark S. Humayun, M.D., professor, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California

  • Michael M. Chorost, author, Rebuilt: How Becoming a Part Computer Made Me More Human

Deep Brain Stimulation

  • Benjamin D. Greenberg, M.D., associate professor of psychiatry and human behavior, Brown University

  • Gerry Radano, mental health advocate and author, Contaminated: My Journey out of OCD

  • Mario Della Grotta, Rhode Island patient who was the first in the United States to undergo deep brain stimulation surgery for obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

Spinal Injuries

  • Andrew Cappuccino, M.D., orthopedic surgeon, Buffalo Bills

Paralyzed Rehabilitation

  • P. Hunter Peckham, Donnell Institute of Biomedical Engineering and director, FES Center at Case Western University

  • Jennifer French, co-founder and president, Neurotech Network


'/>"/>

Contact: Richard Lewis
richard_lewis@brown.edu
401-863-3766
Brown University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Good earth: Brown chemists show origin of soil-scented geosmin
2. Brown scientists take the petri dish to new dimensions
3. Dont judge a brook by its color -- brown waters are more natural
4. Computers explain why pears may become brown during commercial storage
5. Rare North Island brown kiwi hatches at the Smithsonians National Zoo
6. New study changes conditions for Spanish brown bears
7. Brown hosts regional bioengineering conference
8. Eliminating germline lengthens fly lifespan, Brown study shows
9. Brown scientists say biodiversity is crucial to ecosystem productivity
10. Brown opens institute for molecular and nanoscale innovation
11. Office of the Director of National Intelligence, CIO to Speak at Government Security Conference
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Brown to host conference on advances in neurotechnology
(Date:10/3/2019)... , ... October 01, 2019 , ... ... pouring and dispensing of chemicals, reagents, and medias and to be a more ... Bag is the culmination of years of experience and feedback from the original ...
(Date:9/30/2019)... ... September 30, 2019 , ... USDM Life Sciences , ... science organizations to accelerate innovation and maximize productivity, announces that David Blewitt will ... Just 30 days to 21 CFR Part 11 compliance with Box, When: Friday, ...
(Date:9/25/2019)... ... 25, 2019 , ... The esteemed dental implant specialists at ... for a variety of procedures, including single tooth replacement, new “teeth-in-a-day” immediately functioning ... implants offer patients permanent tooth replacement solutions that look and function very ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/24/2019)... ... 24, 2019 , ... Drug resistance has been declared as one of the ... becoming one of the most serious concerns. Hong Kong cannot be spared from the ... (CA-MRSA), or a seven-fold of the figure in 2007 – the year the disease ...
(Date:9/24/2019)... ... September 24, 2019 , ... In the past three years, the National Science ... South Dakota School of Mines & Technology that expands human understanding of ... to form a slimy and yet strong layer which is commonly known as a ...
(Date:9/17/2019)... , ... September 17, 2019 , ... ... improve success in chronic diseases, announces today that the U.S. Patent and Trademark ... combinatorial genetic algorithm to rank drug class recommendations for hypertension treatment. , ...
(Date:9/17/2019)... ... 2019 , ... MyBioGate Global Healthcare Innovation Competition Boston Preliminary ... a forum organized by MyBioGate, Inc. and CUBIO Innovation Center that promotes and ... of evaluation, twelve companies out of over 200 applications were selected to compete ...
Breaking Biology Technology: