Implants Melt In Your Brain, Not In Your Hands
Two new implantable devices are actually designed to dissolve in the brain over time, possibly eliminating problems with implants.
(From Illustration of the construction of a bioresorbable neural electrode array for ECoG and subdermal EEG measurements)
University of Pennsylvania researchers have developed an electrode and an electrode array, both made of layers of silicon and molybdenum that can measure physiological characteristics (like neuron signals) and dissolve at a known rate (determined by the material’s thickness). The team used the device in anesthetized rats to record brain waves (EEGs) and induced epileptic spikes in intact live tissue.
In another experiment, they showed the dissolvable electronics could be used in a complex, multiplexed ECoG (intracranial electroencephalography) array over a 30-day period.
As the researchers note online in Nature Materials, this new technology offers equal or greater resolution for measuring the brain’s electrical activity, compared to conventional electrodes, while eliminating “the risks, cost, and discomfort associated with surgery to extract current devices used for post-operative monitoring,” according to senior co-author Brian Litt, MD, a professor of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Bioengineering at the Perelman School of Medicine.
In his 2016 novel Killing Titan, Greg Bear describes Cranial Amplified Programming (CAP), a gel cap that fits on top of the head and is slowly absorbed.
Crew chief quickly opens a plastic box and removes stacks of gray circles, like doilies or lace yarmulkes, each sealed in gel in an envelope of transparent plastic. Here's the good stuff, Bueller says. I guarantee pleasant dreams...
..just pull the caps out of their wrappers, place them over the center of your crown, and they'll settle in and glue down...
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