NEUWalk

NEUWalk


BioRobotics Institute Role: 
Partner



Project Lifetime
Jun 2012 to Nov 2014

Funding Institutions: 

European Commission

Research Program: 
FP7-ICT-2009-5 / Objective ICT-2009.3.9
Grant no.: 
258654
SSSA Total Cost: 
977,507 €
Contribution to SSSA: 
743,840 €
Dedicated website: 
 
Summary: 

 

Leading European research laboratories combine their expertise and knowledge to design novel neuroprosthetic systems that aim to restore the motor functions of individuals suffering from severe spinal cord injury (SCI) as well as alleviating the symptoms associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD).

To achieve these ambitious objectives, NEUWalk will capitalize on recent breakthroughs in neuroscience research demonstrating the capacity of pharmacological and electrical spinal cord stimulations to promote the recovery of full weight bearing walking in paralyzed SCI rats and to alleviate severe Parkinsonian symptoms in rodents.

These findings will further be developed towards sophisticated multisite stimulation strategies to engage the spinal networks and will be combined with advanced methods of cortical signal recording and neural decoding. Along with that dedicated neuroprosthetic interfaces suited for chronic implantation will we realized by means of leading-edge microtechnology and microelectronics featuring real time data processing, wireless signal transmission as well as programmable multisite stimulation of the spinal cord. Elaboration and validation of the NEUWalk neuroprosthetic concepts will be carried out in rats with SCI and non-human primates with PD.

To accelerate translation towards efficient clinical applications, first preliminary testing in humans with SCI is planned for the end phase of the project. The achievements of NEUWalk are expected to open the doors for future therapy of severe SCI enabling partial restoration of voluntary control of paralyzed limbs and for establishing a novel, efficient clinical strategy for symptomatic treatment of Parkinson’ disease.


Partners: 

 

Institut für Mikrotechnik Mainz GmbH, Germany
Universität Zürich, Switzerland
Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich, Switzerland
Scuola Superiore di Studi Universitari e di Perfezionamento Sant’Anna, Italy
University College London, UK Université Victor Segalen Bordeaux II, France
Inomed Medizintechnik GmbH, Germany
Mega Elektroniikka OY, Finland
Finetech Medical, UK

Media - pictures: 

 

 
 
Publications: 

International Journal with peer review

- Wenger N, Moraud EM, Raspopovic S, Bonizzato M, DiGiovanna J, Musienko P, Morari M, Micera S, Courtine G. Closed-loop neuromodulation of spinal sensorimotor circuits controls refined locomotion after complete spinal cord injury. Sci Transl Med. 2014 Sep 24;6(255):255ra133. doi: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3008325.

- Capogrosso M, Wenger N, Raspopovic S, Musienko P, Beauparlant J, Bassi Luciani L, Courtine G, Micera S. A computational model for epidural electrical stimulation of spinal sensorimotor circuits. J Neurosci. 2013 Dec 4;33(49):19326-40. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1688-13.2013.

- Borton D, Bonizzato M, Beauparlant J, DiGiovanna J, Moraud EM, Wenger N, Musienko P, Minev IR, Lacour SP, Millán Jdel R, Micera S, Courtine G. Corticospinal neuroprostheses to restore locomotion after spinal cord injury. Neurosci Res. 2014 Jan;78:21-9. doi: 10.1016/j.neures.2013.10.001. Epub 2013 Oct 14.


Meet the team