Originally posted on Next Impulse Sports  |  Last updated 4/8/14
Well, this is pretty freakin’ amazing. Researchers at the University of Louisville’s Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Research Center have been testing a groundbreaking electrical spinal cord implant for the past few years, and so far, four test subjects — all with total paralysis in their legs — have recorded movement in their legs. And not just small movements, either. All four patients can move their legs and toes, and have lifted weights of up to 100 kilograms (about 220 pounds). We’re no scientists, so we’ll let the folks at New Scientist explain how it works: The device – an array of electrodes – is implanted not at the point of injury, but in the still intact lumbosacral region of the spinal cord, which is the main information hub linking the brain to the lower limbs. Despite being crushed, (researcher Claudia) Angeli says, the spinal cord and its associated nerve connections retain huge capacity to continue sending messages… …the implant restores what in healthy people would be the resting potential of the spinal cord, the baseline electrical activity that keeps the cord alert, but which wanes through lack of use in people who are paralysed. Once this background electrical impetus is restored artificially, the cord reawakens and can register the brain’s “intent” to move from the brain and convert this into fine movement at the motor neuron level. And by modulating the voltage for each individual and for each task, algorithms that optimise delivery of electrical activity for specific movement can be worked out and applied at will by the patients. In addition to the leg movement, patients have also reported — to varying degrees — restored bladder, bowel and sexual function. The team hopes to continue research on eight new subjects, in conjunction with ongoing animal studies, to achieve the ultimate goal of restoring the ability to walk. [Gizmodo] Article found on: Next Impulse Sports
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Vikings land Adrian Peterson’s replacement, trade up for Dalvin Cook

WATCH: Kris Bryant launches moonshot completely out of Fenway Park

Kevin King, alone in green room, taken first in Round 2 by Packers

Felix Hernandez, Mitch Haniger expected to miss 3-4 weeks for Mariners

CFL fines head coach for meeting with Johnny Manziel rep

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Reuben Foster hung up on Saints when 49ers called him

Packers ‘taking calls’ for No. 33 pick in draft

Bears confirm that Mike Glennon is their starter for the 2017 season

Report: Jets making calls trying to trade Sheldon Richardson

Broncos players take to Twitter to call for team to sign Gary Barnidge

Report: Paul likely to re-sign with Clippers; Griffin more uncertain

The 'Beast Mode as a parting gift' quiz

Best of Yardbarker: Don't sleep on the Stanley Cup Playoffs

Our favorite undrafted players of all time

Everything you need for the 2017 NFL Draft

Kicking it: Orlando surges while the Galaxy struggles

Three Up, Three Down: Madison Bumgarner gets grounded

Box Score 4/28: NFL Draft gets younger every year

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'NFL Draft Day is finally upon us' quiz

Most memorable 'NFL Draft weekend drama' stories

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Eastern rivalries take center stage

Marshawn Lynch gives an already-spurned city hometown appeal

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Don't sleep on the Stanley Cup Playoffs

The 'Beast Mode as a parting gift' quiz

Everything you need for the 2017 NFL Draft

Our favorite undrafted players of all time

Kicking it: Orlando surges while the Galaxy struggles

Three Up, Three Down: Madison Bumgarner gets grounded

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'NFL Draft Day is finally upon us' quiz

Most memorable 'NFL Draft weekend drama' stories

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Eastern rivalries take center stage

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker