A team of researchers at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., used electrode implanted in the paralyzed hands of monkeys to get them to pick up a ball, according to MSN News
The implants allowed a direct connection from monkey brain to muscle without having to go through the spinal cord. While there are electrical stimulation devices for humans with spinal disorders, they require the movement of a large muscle to stimulate electrical currents. It would be a breakthrough if the technique that worked on monkeys in the research lab at Northwestern lab worked on human patients.
But readers shouldn't hold their breaths yet — researchers admit there are many difference between the monkeys and human paralyzed subjects whose muscles have weakened because they haven't been used for some time.
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