Researchers working with Rhesus monkeys (that had been paralyzed in one leg due to spinal cord injuries) were able to create an implant that could bypass the spinal cord damage by sending instructions directly from the brain to the nerves controlling leg movement.
ACCORDING TO THE RESULTS OF THE STUDY, PUBLISHED IN NATURE, THE IMPLANT’S EFFECTIVENESS IS ALMOST IMMEDIATE.
The monkeys regained some control of the paralyzed leg within a week of receiving the implant — and they were even able to walk in a straight line on a treadmill.
They have yet to test the monkey’s ability to steer, but this development is still a huge breakthrough.
“This is the first time that a neurotechnology has restored locomotion in primates,” researcher Dr. Gregoire Courtine told BBC News.
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