Getting signals into the brain

Visual prosthetics through thalamic microstimulation

John S. Pezaris, Emad N. Eskandar

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

42 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Common causes of blindness are diseases that affect the ocular structures, such as glaucoma, retinitis pigmentosa, and macular degeneration, rendering the eyes no longer sensitive to light. The visual pathway, however, as a predominantly central structure, is largely spared in these cases. It is thus widely thought that a device-based prosthetic approach to restoration of visual function will be effective and will enjoy similar success as cochlear implants have for restoration of auditory function. In this article the authors review the potential locations for stimulation electrode placement for visual prostheses, assessing the anatomical and functional advantages and disadvantages of each. Of particular interest to the neurosurgical community is placement of deep brain stimulating electrodes in thalamic structures that has shown substantial promise in an animal model. The theory of operation of visual prostheses is discussed, along with a review of the current state of knowledge. Finally, the visual prosthesis is proposed as a model for a general high-fidelity machine-brain interface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalNeurosurgical Focus
Volume27
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 27 2009
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Visual Prosthesis
Electrodes
Brain
Brain-Computer Interfaces
Retinitis Pigmentosa
Visual Pathways
Cochlear Implants
Macular Degeneration
Blindness
Glaucoma
Animal Models
Light
Equipment and Supplies

Keywords

  • Deep brain stimulation
  • Visual function
  • Visual prosthesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

Cite this

Getting signals into the brain : Visual prosthetics through thalamic microstimulation. / Pezaris, John S.; Eskandar, Emad N.

In: Neurosurgical Focus, Vol. 27, No. 1, 27.10.2009.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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