Noninvasive Ultrasound Pulses Could Treat Neuro Disorders, Enhance Cognitive Function

Thursday, June 10, 2010 - 17:22 in Biology & Nature

The complexity of the brain makes it one of the most fascinating and sophisticated pieces of biology that we know of. But when things start to go sideways up there, modern medicine is often calls for treatments like surgery or shock stimulation, practices that can result in even more damage to fragile brain tissues. But a new method of noninvasive brain stimulation could diagnose and treat an array of neurological ailments using nothing but pulses of harmless ultrasound. Using super-sensitive ultrasound, a team or researchers at Arizona State University was able to elicit motor responses from an anesthetized mouse. The team knew from prior research that stimulating action potentials in brain tissue with ultrasound was possible in dishes containing brain tissue samples. But the ability to accomplish such a feat through layers of skin and bone and generate results in an intact, living brain brings ultrasound into the realm of realistic...

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