Novel brain-computer interface technology developed by researchers has allowed a paraplegic man to walk for a short distance. In the preliminary proof-of-concept study, a person with complete paralysis in both legs due to spinal cord injury was able–for the first time–to take steps without relying on manually controlled robotic limbs. The male participant, whose legs had been paralyzed for five years, walked along a 12-foot course using an electroencephalogram-based system that lets the brain bypass the spinal cord to send messages to the legs. It takes electrical signals from the subject’s brain, processes them through a computer algorithm, and fires them off to electrodes placed around the knees that trigger movement in the leg muscles.
Visit Website | Image credit: Courtesy of UCI’s Brain Computer Interface Lab