Graduate Student Awards
The Kavli Foundation Early Career Lectureship in Materials Science

Symposium BM07: Bioelectronics—Fundamentals, Materials and Devices

Brian Litt, Penn Epilepsy Center

 Engineering the Next Generation of Neurodevices—New Materials and Clinical Translation

Written by Hortense Le Ferrand

Innovation in materials science can help clinicians in many ways. As an example, Brian Litt from the Penn Epilepsy Center introduced the case of an epileptic patient suffering from regular seizures. By implanting four electrodes into the brain of the patient, the clinicians could determine where abnormal activity occurs and locally ablate those areas. This is the technology used to treat epilepsy for the past 20 years and still used today. As a result, the patient had less intense seizures, but still some epileptic symptoms remain.

Litt described several areas where materials researchers can work together with medical doctors to improve the therapy and treat the patient. First, decreasing the size of the electrodes and improving their biocompatibility would reduce the inflammatory response post-implantation and the tissue damage. Second, increasing the number of electrodes to a reasonable amount could allow a more accurate detection of the epileptic network location. Third, development of a cloud-based system to collect, compute, and interpret the data from the electrodes is also needed.

If there is a lot of progress and innovation in the fabrication of multiple channels electrodes and biocompatible materials, there is still a significant gap between the research and the concrete applications. Litt emphasizes with this example the need for collaborations to achieve translational applications.


Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)