The geometric design of micromachined silicon sieve electrodes influences functional nerve regeneration

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

A neural interface could be used to control a limb prosthesis. Such an interface can be created by facilitating axonal regeneration through a sieve electrode and then register nerve signals intended to control the prosthesis. A key question is how to design the electrodes to ensure the best possible regeneration. Our previous studies have indicated that regeneration can be achieved using electrodes with square-shaped, 100×100 μm, via holes (holes that axons will regenerate through). Other reports have indicated a suitable range of these holes between 40 and 65 μm. In the present study we used silicon sieve electrodes with via holes of either 30 or 90 μm. The transparency, i.e. the percentage of the total via hole area, of these electrodes was either 20 or 30%. The electrodes were inserted into a silicone chamber which was used to bridge a gap in a rat sciatic nerve. After 12 weeks of nerve regeneration electrodes with a hole size of 30 μm and a 30% transparency had the most favourable result as judged by the regained gastrocnemius muscle force and the formation of reactive tissue inside the chamber. The sieve electrode transparency is crucial for ensuring regeneration.

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Authors
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Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Bioengineering Equipment

Keywords

  • Silicon, Nerve regeneration, Rat sciatic nerve, Sieve electrode
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1187-1193
JournalBiomaterials
Volume22
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes