Lifelike Robotic Limbs That Plug Into the Brain

robotic limb

A brain-controlled prosthetic arm, under development at the Applied Physics Lab at Johns Hopkins University.

Most of the robotic arms now in use by some amputees are of limited practicality; they have only two to three degrees of freedom, allowing the user to make a single movement at a time. And they are controlled with conscious effort, meaning the user can do little else while moving the limb.

 

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Tiny Implants Connected To Nerve Cells Could Allow Greater Control Of Prosthetics

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Muscle cells (shown here) are grown on a biological scaffold.

A novel implant seeded with muscle cells could better integrate prosthetic limbs with the body, allowing amputees greater control over robotic appendages. The construct, developed at the University of Michigan, consists of tiny cups, made from an electrically conductive polymer, that fit on nerve endings and attract the severed nerves. Electrical signals coming from the nerve can then be translated and used to move the limb.

 

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Exoskeleton Prototypes By Honda

Exoskeleton Prototypes By Honda

Bodyweight Support Assist 

Not so long ago we spoke highly about the Chariot that helps the amputees stand tall, and as if the world has taken to such technology development in a frenzy, we now have robotic aid to help people walk and lift coming from the American Honda Motors. Dubbed the Stride Management Assist and the Bodyweight Support Assist, these prototypes will help the weak-limbed or the elderly walk in a much more assured manner. (Video) (Pics)

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Hand Transplant Patient Shows Signs Of Sensory Recovery

Hand Transplant Patient Shows Signs Of Sensory Recovery 

Activation of the left cerebral hemisphere during sensory stimulation of the transplanted right palm.  

Four months after a successful hand transplant — 35 years after amputation in an industrial accident at age 19 — a 54-year-old man’s emerging sense of touch is registered in the former “hand area” of the his brain, says a University of Oregon neuroscientist.

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