University of California, Berkeley researchers are building equipment to project holographs into the human brain to trigger or suppress many neurons at once, hundreds of times each second, duplicating actual activity patterns to trick the brain into thinking it has felt, seen, or sensed something.
They want their holographic brain modulator to interpret neural activity constantly and decide which sets of neurons to activate to simulate the pattern and rhythm of a true neural response, for applications such as restoring lost sensations after nerve damage or controlling a prosthetic appendage.
The current modulator can trigger up to 50 neurons simultaneously in a three-dimensional brain segment with several thousand neurons, repeating it up to 300 times every second with different sets of 50 neurons.
Each neuron is equipped with a protein that activates the cell when briefly struck by light, and the researchers used computer-generated holography to target each cell individually.
From Berkeley News
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