VIDEO #1: Neurotechnology to Restore Function After Spinal Cord Injury
VIDEO #2: Limb Reanimation After Spinal Cord Injury
Peter J. Grahn, Mayo Clinic Predoctoral student, Neurobiology Disease Track and Kendall Lee, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Neurosurgery at Mayo Clinic, discuss Grahn’s background and research. In 2005 he suffered a cervical spinal cord injury, spurring his interest in spinal cord research. Peter joined the Mayo Neural Engineering Laboratories to assist in the effort to reach a cure for people like him who suffer from chronic paralysis. Grahn’s thesis research includes the use of a wirelessly controlled electrical stimulator in a rodent model of paralysis that had been paralyzed for 7 days. Researchers stimulated within the spinal cord using technique called intraspinal microstimulation and they wirelessly controlled that stimulation to restored hind limb responses. Grahn ultimately hopes to develop technologies to restore function through intraspinal and epidural stimulation and translate those technologies to clinical use.
Limb Reanimation After Spinal Cord Injury
Carmen Terzic, M.D., Ph.D., Chair of the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Mayo Clinic and Kendall Lee, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Neurosurgery at Mayo Clinic, discuss limb reanimation after spinal cord injury. Dr. Lee highlighted two aspects of the research. He and his team, including doctoral student Peter Grahn, who is a spinal cord injury survivor, and Dr. Kristin Zhao’s team in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, have received a “Mayo Clinic Transform the Practice” grant to study the possibility of restoring lower extremity motor function in patients with paralysis due to spinal cord injury by using epidural electrical stimulation.
This represents a replication of work by Dr. Susan Harkema at the University of Louisville and Dr. Reggie Edgerton at UCLA in the application of existing stimulator technologies to novel therapies.
The Mayo Clinic Division of Engineering, chaired by Professor Kevin Bennet and Dr. Lee’s Neural Engineering Laboratory are also developing next-generation devices for implantation and stimulation deep within the spinal cord itself, which they hope will be even more effective than the existing external epidural stimulator devices being used in their current replication study.