US Gov't Allocates $20M For Electroceuticals Research
National Institute of Health(NIH) announced the recipient of the US $20 million in funding for the said field. Their aim is to improve on maps of peripheral nervous system and generate sophisticated system that can hack into codes.
The said funding was part of the $248 million, seven year program that the NIH Common Fund announced in 2014. Agency will begin to accept applications for those awards by early 2017.
It was said that researches have been electrically stimulating the brain, spinal chord, and peripheral nerves in an attempt alleviate ailments such as Parkinson's Disease, epilepsy, pain and paralysis. Also, this could work better than dugs leading to dub the field "electroceuticals". Tools have been a success and that clinically studies had shown that it can reduce seizure and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and can help people regain bladder control.
There are still also some problems with the current device and that is they shoot electrical impulses broadly.
The National Institute of Health(NIH) had already distributed the $20 million among 27 research team. Majority of which went to projects that aims to develop functional and anatomic maps of neural circuits.
These are some of the highlights of the said report :
- An optical probe to stimulate groups of fibers withinthe vagus nerve that innervate the pancreas. ($434,887) The team, led by Richard Weir at the University of Colorado in Denver, aims to develop a compact multiphoton microscope that can both read and control neuronal activity.
- Microelectrode arrays that record and map the electrical signalsthat control the heart as it beats and moves. ($313,980) The cardiac-neural mapping devices will consist of two-dimensional and three-dimensional arrays containing hundreds of high definitionelectrode contacts on a thin-filmgrid. The project is headed up by Jeffrey Ardell at the University of California Los Angeles.
- A wireless implantable system-on-a-chip to monitor the neural signals that controlstomach contractions. ($328,909)The device could be implanted laparoscopically or endoscopically through the stomach, and will be tested first in pigs. The proposal comes from Aydin Farajidavar at the New York Institute of Technology.
- A suite of soft, permanently implantable microscale devices that can modulate thenerves of the bladder. ($363,188) Theteam isled by Robert Gereau at Washington University and John Rogers at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (known for his soft electronic materials).
- Ultrasound technology that can record neural activity noninvasivelyin the body. ($274,592) The project aims to improve the resolution of ultrasound technology and tailor it to real-time recording of neural activity. Headed up by Mark Okusa at the University of Virginia.
- A nanowire that can be threaded intothe carotid sinus nerve to study hypertension. ($285,600) The device willrecord and possibly stimulateactivity of the carotid sinus nerve in rats.It can absorb collagen, allowing for long-term implantation. The team, led by Dominique Durand at Case Western Reserve University,plans to test the hypothesis that the cortid sinus nerve's activity increases with the development of hypertension.
- New uses for existing devices. Three teams were awarded funding to repurposecommercialdevices made by Nuviant Medical, Boston Scientific and CVRx. Brendan Canning's team atJohns Hopkins University will study the use of Nuviant's Synapse device, previously used for deep brain stimulation, for treatment of asthma($541,305). Jiande Chen's team from Johns Hopkins will work with a Boston Scientificspinal stimulation device, approved for chronic pain, to address gastroparesis, a disorder that affects the movement of food and iscommon in diabetes ($623,732). Jieyun None Yin at Transtimulation Research, Inc will take CVRx's carotidbaroreceptor stimulation device for heart failure and see what it can do for diabetes($474,125).