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Fractal Electrodes as a Generic Interface for Stimulating Neurons.

著者 Watterson WJ , Montgomery RD , Taylor RP
Sci Rep.2017 Jul 27 ; 7(1):6717.
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The prospect of replacing damaged body parts with artificial implants is being transformed from science fiction to science fact through the increasing application of electronics to interface with human neurons in the limbs, the brain, and the retina. We propose bio-inspired electronics which adopt the fractal geometry of the neurons they interface with. Our focus is on retinal implants, although performance improvements will be generic to many neuronal types. The key component is a multifunctional electrode; light passes through this electrode into a photodiode which charges the electrode. Its electric field then stimulates the neurons. A fractal electrode might increase both light transmission and neuron proximity compared to conventional Euclidean electrodes. These advantages are negated if the fractal's field is less effective at stimulating neurons. We present simulations demonstrating how an interplay of fractal properties generates enhanced stimulation; the electrode voltage necessary to stimulate all neighboring neurons is over 50% less for fractal than Euclidean electrodes. This smaller voltage can be achieved by a single diode compared to three diodes required for the Euclidean electrode's higher voltage. This will allow patients, for the first time, to see with the visual acuity necessary for navigating rooms and streets.
PMID: 28751652 [PubMed - in process]
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