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4 Brain computer interface for paralysis
  1. Leigh R Hochberg
  1. Professor of Engineering, School of Engineering and Carney Institute for Brain Science, Brown University; Director, VA RRandD Center for Neurorestoration and Neurotechnology (CNN), Providence VAMC; Neurologist at Massachusetts General Hospital, where he attends in the NeurICU and on the Acute Stroke service; and Senior Lecturer on Neurology at Harvard Medical School. Professor Hochberg also directs the Center for Neurotechnology and Neurorecovery at MGH, and is the IDE Sponsor-Investigator and Principal Investigator of the BraiGate clinical trials, conducted by a close collaboration of scientists and clinicians at Brown, Case Western Reserve, MGH, Providence VAMC, and Stanford. Dr. Hochbergs research focuses on the development and testing of novel neurotechnologies to help people with paralysis and other neurologic disorders. Dr. Hochberg and his research with the collaborative BraiGate team have been honored with the Joseph Martin Prize in Basic Research, the Herbert Pardes Prize for Excellence in Clinical Research, the first Israel Brain Technologies international B.R.A.I.N. Prize, presented by President Shimon Peres, and the Derek Denny-Brown Young Neurological Scholar Award. Dr. Hochbergs BraiGate research, which has been published Nature, Lancet, Science Translational Medicine, Life, Nature Medicine, Nature Neuroscience, the Journal of Neuroscience, the Journal of Neural Engineering, and others, is supported by the Rehabilitation RandD Service of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the NIH BRAIN Initiative/NINDS, NIDCD, and philanthropies including the ALS Association, the Movement Disorder Foundation and the Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation


Intracortically-based Brain-Computer Interfaces (iBCIs) are poised to revolutionize our ability to restore lost neurologic functions. By recording high resolution neural activity from the brain, the intention to move ones hand can be detected and decoded in real- time, potentially providing people with motor neuron disease (ALS), stroke, or spinal cord injury with restored or maintained ability to control communication devices, assistive technologies, and their own limbs. iBCIs also are central to the development of closed-loop neuromodulation systems, with great potential to serve people with neuropsychiatric disorders. A multi-site pilot clinical trial of the investigational BrainGate system is assessing the feasibility of people with tetraplegia controlling a computer cursor and other devices simply by imagining the movement of their own arm or hand. This presentation will review some of the recent progress made in iBCIs, the information that can be decoded from ensembles of cortical or subcortical neurons in real-time, and the challenges and opportunities for restorative neurotechnologies in research and clinical practice.

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