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Article published in Science Translational Medicine

Closed-loop neuromodulation of spinal sensorimotor circuits controls refined locomotion after comple...

14-16 November 2012 International Conference on Neurorehabilitation

NEUWalk scientists Prof. Courtine and Prof. Micera participate in the conference.

Results published in Science and Nature Magazine

Rats with spinal cord injuries and severe paralysis are now walking thanks to researchers from NEUWa...

Monitoring and feedback for stimulation of spinal cord injured gait

In clinical experiments, locomotor capabilities are traditionally evaluated through visual scoring systems and clinically validated rating scales. However, no detailed information on the features of stepping patterns is usually collected and important differences between healthy and pathological gait patterns can remain invisible to the naked eye. This lack of precise quantification of gait is not only detrimental for our understanding of motor control mechanisms post-injury, but also for the comparison of therapeutic outcomes in rats and monkeys compared to humans. Specialized devices for producing the specific quantitative information are thus needed for studies in human locomotion as well as for investigating real-time control paradigms of epidural electrical stimulation after spinal cord injury.

To develop the needed biosignal measurement tools for investigation of real-time control paradigms of epidural electrical stimulation of the spinal cord and for studies of human locomotion, a dual-path development was undertaken. The first development is a wired, compact and multi-channel measurement device, which communicates with and sends measured biosignals in real-time to a human machine interface (HMI) which controls stimulation. The second development is a wireless biosignal measurement system, consisting of small single-channel measurement units, which provide neuromuscular, kinetic and kinematic signals of the moving patient and communicate these to a receiver unit, which in turn forwards the measured data in time-synchrony to a motion analysis system. The sensor can be used with adhesive Ag-AgCl electrodes and with multi-use textile EMG electrodes. Textile electrodes were developed to maximize patient comfort during experiments while obtaining high fidelity musculo-neurological data for gait analysis.


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