‘Prosthetic Memory’ Brain Implants can improve short-term memories
Do you often forget where you have put your keys? and struggle to find them
Are you forgetting things at work despite all of your efforts to remember them?
The common memory lapses are frustrating and could cause you an embarrassment in your professional life.
Well, there is a cure!
Now you can recover your memory with a neural implant
According to the new research carried out by Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) that an electrode implanted into the brain can cure the short-term memory lapses.
In this military-funded pilot study, scientists have successfully tested a “prosthetic memory.”
Prosthetic Memory is a neural implant that has an ability recognize your brain activity when you are trying to recall new information and then replicate that activity with electrical signals to give memory a boost.
In an initial trial at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, “prosthetic memory” implant helped 15 patients to improve their short-term memories by the average of 35%.
The lead study author Robert Hampson, a professor of physiology, pharmacology, and neurology at Wake Forest School of Medicine in North Carolina, has hailed this breakthrough as a huge success.
“In one sense, we were not surprised to find that this worked,” Hampson said in a video that accompanied the paper. “We had a long history of animal studies in which we were testing this concept in other species — in animals in the laboratory — and we were having success. What surprised us was how successful it was.”
The patient involved in the study were part of the epilepsy treatment program and already had electrodes implanted in their brains to map neural activity for seizure treatment and surgery.
During their off time, the patients were required to play a simple to play a simple memory game (identifying which of several images were shown on a previous screen) and mapped patients’ neuron activity, especially in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for memory creation.
At the time when the researchers stimulated the patients’ hippocampus in later trials using personalized “memory codes, the short-term memory of the patients significantly improved.
According to the study, patients’ correct responses increased by an average of 37 percent during the 2-minute trial and 35 percent in the 75-minute trial when their brains were stimulated — figures that Hampson called “a substantial improvement.”
That is going to require some decisions by the doctors, by the patients and by the researchers as to when we put electrodes in and who we’re going to help,” Hampson said. “But our target is to help people who have had a traumatic brain injury, who have had a stroke, people who have memory loss due to aging, Alzheimer’s or any number of other diseases that can affect the memory.”