A new generation of medical devices will restore speech and communication in disabled patients
One of the most invalidating neuropsychological conditions is the impossibility to communicate with others. Existing technologies are relatively effective at indicating the sorts of neural signals relevant to speech. These however operate too slowly and possess poor resolution that is fit for a realistic speech situation, such as conversation. Now, scientists around Europe are on their way to surpass these limitations.
Researchers from BrainCom are developing novel medical devices that will explore and will repair cognitive functions, such as speech and communication. Funded by the EU’s Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) programme, the BrainCom project will design ultra-flexible cortical implants that will be able to perform large-scale recording and stimulation of the brain thanks to technologies based on nanomaterials. It is being coordinated by the Catalan Institut of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in Barcelona (ICN2). Hopefully, this will help aphasic patients suffering from upper spinal cord, brain stem or brain damage.
This video was made by Arianna Ricchiuti (Franco Prattico Master Programme in Science Communication, SISSA, Trieste) as part of the iCons Foundation Journalist in the Lab initiative. Read more about it here.