Scientists developed a brain implant, that noticeably boosted memory in its first serious test run.
To test the implant, a team of scientists led by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Thomas Jefferson University, recruited 25 patients who were clinically monitored for epilepsy, and for this goal, the device and its monitoring process required the insertion of small probes into the brain.
The device works as a pacemaker, sends electrical impulses to help the brain when it’s struggling to save new information; but remains calm when it feels that the brain works well.
In the test, the device improved word recall by 15%; nearly as much as Alzheimer’s disease take away from its victims over the course of two and a half years, reported Nature Communications magazine.
The implant is still experimental. Researchers are now in the process of discussions to commercialization the technology. The wide applicability of the implant is still unknown, because it has been tested only in people with epilepsy.
Perhaps this new technology represents a new strategy and a step forward in the treatment of dementia, traumatic brain injury and other conditions that damage the memory.