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Keck Foundation funds work on tiny, implantable computers to restore lost brain functions
Date:2/8/2011

o identify critical areas for movement, language, memory and other functions prior to epilepsy surgery. He will bring his extensive knowledge of functional brain mapping and clinical recording of signals from the human brain to the project. He will help design and test the custom computer-enabled electrode arrays for potential applications to patient care.

Among the engineering and health issues the team will be addressing are integrating the electronics with the electrode array and making it small enough, finding a reliable source of the low power necessary to operate the system, evaluating any hazards the device might pose or serious long-term side effects, and developing biomaterials that won't cause irritation or be rejected, as well as meeting other safety, performance, and acceptability criteria.

"We are extremely grateful to the Keck Foundation for supporting this highly ambitious endeavor," Fetz said. "Looking ahead, we can anticipate that future innovations in nanotechnology, computers and brain science will advance this effort beyond the current state of the art. The grant allows us to be poised to incorporate these advances into the development of more powerful recurrent brain computer interfaces. We expect that these devices will have numerous applications in basic neuroscience research and as well as in clinical care."


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Contact: Leila Gray
leilag@u.washington.edu
206-685-0381
University of Washington
Source:Eurekalert  

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Keck Foundation funds work on tiny, implantable computers to restore lost brain functions
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