Michigan has been at the forefront of neurotechnology since the 1970s, when Ken Wise, now a professor emeritus in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Michigan, invented the silicon neural probe. Today a cluster of innovative, accomplished faculty is driving the field forward, working side-by-side with clinicians in the U-M Medical School to focus on translational applications to improve the lives of patients.
What We Do:
- Brain Machine Interfaces
- Create Nerve Signals using multi-electrode arrays in the brain
- Restoring vision, feeling, and movement
- Pain Control
- Moveable Prosthetics
Relevant Research From BME Faculty
Dr. Scott Lempka – Neuromodulation for Pain
The Neuromodulation Lab is interested in the innovation of electrical stimulation therapies for neurological disorders (a.k.a. neuromodulation), specifically for chronic pain management.
- The overall goal of our group is to develop a patient-specific approach using computer models and clinical measurements. We believe this research will help optimize current technologies and innovate new therapies to improve patient outcomes.
- Electrical stimulation therapies for chronic pain management, such as spinal cord stimulation, represent a multi-billion dollar per year medical device market. Although these technologies have existed for decades and are currently used to treat thousands of patients a year, they have a relatively limited success rate. These limited outcomes can largely be attributed to the simple fact that we don’t know how they work.
- The goal of the Neuromodulation Lab is to transform the field of neuromodulation for chronic pain by designing the tools necessary to carry out systematic, controlled, and well-powered studies, driven by scientifically-based computational models.
Dr. Lonnie Shea – Regenerative Medicine: Islet Transplantation
The Shea Lab is interested in combinatorial therapies for the treatment of spinal cord injury
- Our long-term goal is to develop a combination therapy based on biomaterials that can bridge, modulate the injury microenvironment, and drive axon growth through an inhibitory milieu enabling the promotion and direction of axonal growth into, through, and re-entering spared host tissue to form functional connections with intact circuitry below the injury.
- This is accomplished through the use of biomaterials, stem cells, and gene therapy
- The bridges could be an off-the-shelf product that is readily available for implantation.