Brain-machine interfaces promise to aid paralyzed patients by re-routing movement-related signals around damaged parts of the nervous system. A new study in Nature demonstrates a human with spinal injury manipulating a screen cursor and robotic devices by thought alone. Implanted electrodes in his motor cortex recorded neural activity, and translated it into movement commands. A second study, in monkeys, shows that brain-machine interfaces can operate at high speed, greatly increasing their clinical potential. This Nature Web Focus includes exclusive interviews and video footage of experiments, alongside papers that paved the way for these recent advances, and can be accessed at Nature Web Focus.
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