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University of Houston researchers helping Pentagon build mind-controlled prosthetics
Date:1/11/2011

in Michigan, where a team led by professor Daryl Kipke will build specialized neural implants for use in laboratory testing. Researchers at the Seattle institute, under the direction of William Shain, will take three-dimensional images of how different brain cells are reacting to an implant. Shain's lab is a world leader in multispectral laser scanning confocal microscopy, an imaging technique that produces high-resolution three-dimensional images of brain tissue, with each different type of tissue and cell assigned a unique color.

Those images will be transmitted to UH, where Roysam's team will run them through a sophisticated and powerful software platform called FARSIGHT, which will analyze the histology, or cellular makeup, of the images. Developed by a collaborative team led by Roysam with the support of the National Institutes of Health, FARSIGHT will translate these images into data that quantifies the response of each individual brain cell and cell type to the implant.

RPI researchers Kristin Bennett and Mark Embrechts will then use advanced pattern recognition software and techniques to identify the factors that cause implants to fail prematurely.

Using this information, they will recommend design changes to researchers in Michigan, restarting the whole process.

Roysam, who joined UH last year after working as professor of electrical, computer and systems engineering and professor of biomedical engineering at RPI, noted that each contributing group is a world leader in its respective field.

"I am blessed with a dream team," he said. "We have pre-eminent leaders in implant design, 3-D multispectral imaging, quantitative histology, and pattern recognition on our team. Ideally, the team will be able to make great strides in the understanding of neural implant failure."

"DARPA has a vision of a future where a soldier who has lost a limb will regain full use of that limb again through advanced technolog
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Contact: Laura Tolley
ljtolley@uh.edu
713-743-0778
University of Houston
Source:Eurekalert

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