Headline August 11, 2016/ ''' ELECTRO-CEUTICALS & COMPUTER SCIENCES '''



*UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY*  engineers have built the first particle sized, wireless sensors that can be implanted in the body-

Bringing closer the day when a  Fitbit-like  device could monitor internal nerves, muscles or organs in very real time.

Because these battery-less sensors could also be used to stimulate nerves and muscles, the technology also opens the door to  ''electro-ceuticals'' to treat disorders such as: epilepsy or to stimulate the immune system or tamp down inflammation.

The so called neural dust, which the team implanted in the muscles and peripheral nerves of rats, is unique in that ultrasound is used both to power and read out the measurements. 

Ultrasound technology is already well-developed for hospital use, and ultrasound vibrations can penetrate nearly anywhere in the body. unlike radio waves. 

''I think the long-term prospects for neural dust are not only within nerves and the brain, but much broader,''  said Michel Maharbiz, an associate professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences and one of the study's two main authors.

''Having access to  inbody  telemetry  has never been possible because there has been no way to put something super tiny super-deep. But now I can take speck of nothing and park it next to a nerve or organ, your GI tract or a muscle, and read out the data.''

Maharbiz,  neuroscientist   Jose Carmena , a professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences and a member of the  Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute.

The sensors, which the researchers have already shrunk to a  1 millimeter cube  -about the size of a large grain of sand   -contain a piezoelectric crystal that converts ultrasound vibrations from outside the body into electricity to power a tiny, on-board transistor that is in contact with a nerve or  muscle fiber.

A voltage spike in the fiber alters the circuit and the vibration of the crystal, which changes the echo detected by ultrasound receiver, typically the same device that generates the vibrations. The slight change, called back- scatter, allows them to determine the voltage.

In their experiment,, the University of California team powered up the passive sensors every  100 microseconds  with  six  540 nanosecond ultrasound pulses, which gave them a continual, real-time read-out.

They coated the first generation motes  -3 millimeters long, 1 millimeter high and 4/5  millimeter thick  -with surgical grade epoxy, but they are currently building notes from  biocompatible thin films which would potentially last in the body without degradation for a decade or more.  .    

While the experiments so far have involved peripheral nervous system and muscles,  the neural motes  could work equally well in the central nervous system  and brain- to control prosthetics, the researchers say.

Today's implantable electrodes degrade within  1 or 2  years, and all connect to wires that pass through holes in the skull. 

Wireless sensors  -dozens to a hundred   -could be sealed in  avoiding and unwanted movement of the electrodes.

All set then for  *Sprinkling of neural dust to open door for electroceuicals*

The Honour and Serving of the latest  ''Operational Research''  on Technology and Neural Sciences, continues. Thank Ya all for reading and sharing forward,   and see you on the following one:

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