Next-generation interfaces for studying neural function


Monitoring and modulating the diversity of signals used by neurons and glia in a closed-loop fashion is necessary to establish causative links between biochemical processes within the nervous system and observed behaviors. As developments in neural-interface hardware strive to keep pace with rapid progress in genetically encoded and synthetic reporters and modulators of neural activity, the integration of multiple functional features becomes a key requirement and a pressing challenge in the field of neural engineering. Electrical, optical and chemical approaches have been used to manipulate and record neuronal activity in vivo, with a recent focus on technologies that both integrate multiple modes of interaction with neurons into a single device and enable bidirectional communication with neural circuits with enhanced spatiotemporal precision. These technologies not only are facilitating a greater understanding of the brain, spinal cord and peripheral circuits in the context of health and disease, but also are informing the development of future closed-loop therapies for neurological, neuro-immune and neuroendocrine conditions.

Nature biotechnology
James A Frank
Assistant Professor at Vollum Institute, OHSU
Marc-Joseph Antonini
Marc-Joseph Antonini
Graduate Student

Working towards enhancing human health and capabilities by combining engineering and neurosciences.

Polina Anikeeva
Polina Anikeeva
Associate Professor in Materials Science and Engineering
Associate Professor in Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Associate Director, Research Laboratory of Electronics

My goal is to combine the current knowledge of biology and nanoelectronics to develop materials and devices for minimally invasive treatments for neurological and neuromuscular diseases.