The findings, published Nov. 6, 2013, in the journal Science Translational Medicine, advance efforts to develop bilateral movement in brain-controlled prosthetic devices for severely paralyzed patients.
To enable the monkeys to control two virtual arms, researchers recorded nearly 500 neurons from multiple areas in both cerebral hemispheres of the animals’ brains, the largest number of neurons recorded and reported to date.
Millions of people worldwide suffer from sensory and motor deficits caused by spinal cord injuries. Researchers are working to develop tools to help restore their mobility and sense of touch by connecting their brains with assistive devices. The brain-machine interface approach, pioneered at the Duke University Center for Neuroengineering in the early 2000s, holds promise for reaching this goal. However, until now brain-machine interfaces could only control a single prosthetic limb.
Read more at: MedicalXpress