March 2017 - Developments in spinal cord injury research enable paralysed man to use hand.

29 March 2017

Spinal Research was pleased to see the news from Case Western Reserve University, Ohio and how a brain controlled neuroprosthetic enabled a paralysed man to eat and drink. It dramatically highlights how severely a person can be affected by a spinal cord injury and the complexity of the research needed to find effective treatments.

Currently, the brain controlled neuroprosthetic has been applied to one person, in the laboratory setting and will require considerable further work before it can be determined whether this will be a practical option for others. Neuroprosthetics are just one of the many avenues of research being pursued and the goal is to develop suitable treatments that are effective and available to everyone paralysed by spinal cord injury.

Elements of the research were initially studied 15 years ago in the UK. This highlights the international nature of research and the need for increased funding in spinal cord injury research to accelerate the rate at which we take the many promising discoveries made in the laboratory to patients.

Spinal Research is focused on developing effective treatments, and brings together neuroscientists from around the world to collaborate on the priority issues raised by people with a spinal cord injury.

Thanks to the innovative research we have funded, many experimental treatments, including those to restore movement and feeling, have had positive effects on spinal cord injury in the research laboratory. We are determined to see these treatments transferred to the clinic, transforming the lives of paralysed people.