Injectable Implants

I wrote a little bit about deep brain stimulation medical technology developed by the UEGroup in Silicon Valley. June 2015, Mike Orcutt published a fascinating article for the MIT Technology Review about injectable implants. The article’s byline had me at hello:

A new type of flexible electronic device shows promise for long-term brain mapping and could be a more effective way to provide therapeutic stimulation. *

Injectable implants sounds futuristic and may have a lot of push back. Less invasive surgery, I presume has huge benefits on the safety and psychological health of patients. Orcutt describes the potential for neurological damage by traditional implants made of silicon that emit electrodes:

“Recording them requires inserting electrodes into the tissue. But the rigid devices traditionally used to record these signals, or to therapeutically stimulate certain regions, can damage the brain and elicit an immune response, and they tend not to work for very long.” *

There’s also an article by Mark Williams, A Brain Implant that Uses Light,” and another by Jennifer Chu, Light Switches for Neurons,” which describe the use of light to interface with the brain to produce a controlled response.

There’s a lot to say here, but it’s way beyond my expertise! I can only read I think. I’d love to do UX around these innovations in tiny teeny devices and manipulations of neuroanatomy, biology, and electronics. Just maybe! Fall semester is here, and I’m going for neurobiology and engineering. We’ll just have to see how this goes…

Reads & References