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B1: Development, prototyping, fabrication and testing individualized long-term safe electrode arrays

Alfred StettW, Thomas StieglitzX, Jürgen RüheF


W = NMI Natural and Medical Sciences Institute, Tübingen
X = Biomedical Microtechnology
F = Inst. Microsystems Technology, Chemistry & Physics of Interfaces


Scientific background

Invasive BMIs use implanted microelectrode arrays for neuronal stimulation of and recording from certain brain areas. In practice, BMIs break down due to failures of implant components and long-term problems at the implant/tissue interface. Other engineering challenges arise from practical needs: 1) Electrode properties and array design need to be adapted to individual anatomical, (patho-) physiological and functional constraints; 2) the cycle time for designing, prototyping and testing of patient specific electrode arrays needs to be shortened to make BMIs available for individual diagnosis and therapy. We have extensive knowledge in developing and fabrication of polyimide-based microelectrode arrays for stimulation of and recording from the nervous system, retina implants, and polymer engineering.


Objectives

(1) Developing safe microelectrodes suitable for continuous and long-term safe microstimulation and recording with high signal-to-noise ratio, (2) creating smart implant surfaces to increase suitability for less-invasive implantation and to decrease foreign body reactions, (3) shortening the time-to-application of individual and conformal array designs, (4) deliver application-specific electrode arrays to the partners of the centre.

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