Tag: Duke University
Brain Machine Interface plus Virtual Reality plus Exoskeletons, this is all that it takes to trigger the recovery of patients affected by Spinal Cord injuries.
A recent study published in the journal known as ‘Scientific Reports’ by researchers at Duke University showed 8 patients, completely or partially paralyzed, who regained some of their muscle activity and sensation in the lower limbs. This happened as a result of a rigorous training regimen using non-invasive and mind-controlled exoskeletons and virtual reality (VR) system. Miguel Nicolelis and colleagues developed this system that stimulates patient’s brain activity to take control of its limb movement by triggering the injured portions of the spinal cord to re-engage.
Healing protein bridges severed tissue in fish
A freshwater zebrafish costs less than two bucks at the pet store, but it can do something priceless: Its spinal cord can heal completely after being severed, a paralyzing and often fatal injury for humans.
While watching these fish repair their own spinal cord injuries, Duke University scientists have found a particular protein important for the process. Their study, published Nov. 4 in the journal Science, could generate new leads into tissue repair in humans.
Researchers have identified a protein in zebrafish that plays a role in helping heal major spinal cord injuries. The results, published in the 4 November issue of Science, could provide an important clue for researchers looking for ways to facilitate similar tissue repair in humans.
While mammals lack the ability to regenerate nervous system tissue after spinal cord injury, zebrafish can regenerate such tissue. The mechanisms behind this recovery have remained elusive.
“Only six to eight weeks after a paralyzing injury that completely severs their spinal cord, zebrafish form new neurons, regrow axons and recover the ability to swim. Importantly, these regenerative events proceed without massive scarring,” explained Mayssa Mokalled of Duke University, a researcher involved in the study.
After twelve months, eight patients and 2,052 sessions spread over 1,958 hours, Duke University is publishing some promising results from a study seeking to demonstrate the ability for brain-machine interfaces to help restore mobility in humans.
The study, which appeared this week in Scientific Reports, looked at a group of paraplegic patients suffering from a chronic spinal cord injury. The system utilized a brain-machine interface featuring an Oculus Rift headset that simulated the effect of having a neurological connection to their lower limbs. The system was also capable of moving a pair of robotic actuators to actually create movement.
Jay Ruckelshaus graduated high school confident in the future.
The Indianapolis native planned to attend Duke University in the fall of 2011 on a full merit scholarship, and hoped one day to be a politician.
But Ruckelshaus was forced to reevaluate his plans. Just weeks before he was scheduled to arrive on campus, he was involved in a diving accident that left him paralyzed from a severe spinal cord injury.