A new study published in the journal of Nature Methods announces that Stanford engineers have developed body-powered wireless transmitters. Their discovery could help improve nerve cells activity and alleviate some of the health problems that Parkinson patients experience, as well as provide new treatments for stroke.
Previous experiments that researchers have conducted saw the application of a fiber optic cable on the head of the lab mouse to deliver light and give impulses to the ill nerves. Although the findings that investigators have made back then have been very important, lab tests have revealed that mice can’t act completely free because of the cumbersome cable.
The recordings that scientists have made showed that the mice moved freely around the cage, but moving or sleeping in an enclosed space turned out to be quite impossible. For that matter, scientists at the Stanford University have used body-powered wireless transmitters to stimulate and control the mice’s nerves.
During their most recent experiments, researchers implanted a small device in mice’s legs, which was wirelessly controlled through radio energy. After many investigations and calculations, scientists have reached the conclusion that the bodies of the mice can be used as energy conductors if the radio signal is adjusted to the optimum level.
The signal was trapped inside the cavity with the help of a grid, which turned the mouse into a conduit for energy once it sat on it. The radio frequency energy was, thus, sent to the 2-mm loop placed on the implanted device to stimulate nerves.
The mouse is no longer detained by the cable attached to its brain implant and it is free to move according to its wishes. Moreover, the respondents have constantly remained in contact with the produced energy, so the device no longer requires someone to control it.
There are many appliances that may be found for the new body-powered wireless transmitter that scientists have invented. However, additional tests, including human experiments must be carried out before the invention can be widely accepted.
Image source: www.engineering.stanford.edu