The potential of this technology is to eventually design an off-the-shelf sleeve that could stimulate muscles in the forearm, it would be controlled by a brain-computer interface that read neural signals from a brain implant. The Battelle NeuroLife Sleeve that is being developed right now has electrodes deliver stimulation to forearm muscles to control movement, it also read muscle activity to decipher movement intention instead of brain implant. NeuroLink technology possibility is to help restore independence for people living with stroke related disabilities by improving lost hand function.
The sleeve’s electrodes can decode multiple movements and rapidly evoke a variety of hand and forearm movements without having to be connected to a computer interface. When the sleeve is on it continuously measures muscle activity and when a movement intention is detected, the sleeve delivers functional electrical stimulation to muscles across the area, which is believed to improve a variety of hand movements.
Battelle is in the process of developing this sleeve new technology and researching different type of disabilities impacting the motor functions of stroke survivors. This article shows the potential of a new technology that can have a tremendous effect on the lives of stroke patients who are willing to improve their lost hand functions. It explains the technology of the electrodes inserted in the sleeve and how it transit and encode this information and eventually stimulate a movement that can almost be close the normal movement of the patient hand and hopefully reach the level of improvement they had during their pre-stroke life.