neuron-silicon interface?

Jeremy Payne jrpg8255 at uxa.cso.uiuc.edu
Thu Oct 29 10:37:48 EST 1992

FRICHARD at biomed.med.yale.edu (Frank Richardson) writes:

>Hello all,
>Just curious, does anyone know of research into interfacing neurons and silicon
>chips? I'm very serious. I am interested in exploring possibilites for neurons
>communicating with electronics and vic-versa. 

there's some work being done with thin Si wafers impregnated with closely spaced
laser ablated pores, I think out at Stanford, but of course I can't remember who
or exactly where off the top of my head.  In a nutshell, they section I _think_ 
the peroneal nerve in a rat then butt the two stumps up against opposite sides 
of their wafer and let the fibers regrow through the pores.  At the seminar I
heard a year or so ago they claimed something reasonably impressive like 25 % 
of the proximal fibers finding their appropriate targets.  What's really cool of
course is that you can embed electrodes in the chip at the sites of the pores...
Sorry I can't be specific about who, what, when & where, but if it helps you 
the guy giving the seminar (whose name of course I also don't recall) does work
on silastic cochlear implants and is pretty well known.

Jeremy Payne
UIUC Neuroscience program /
College of Medicine
jrpayne at uiuc.edu

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