Durable and Fatigue-Resistant Soft Peripheral Neuroprosthetics for In Vivo Bidirectional Signaling

Hyunseon Seo, Sang Ihn Han, Kang Il Song, Duhwan Seong, Kyungwoo Lee, Sun Hong Kim, Taesung Park, Ja Hoon Koo, Mikyung Shin, Hyoung Won Baac, Ok Kyu Park, Soong Ju Oh, Hyung Seop Han, Hojeong Jeon, Yu Chan Kim, Dae Hyeong Kim, Taeghwan Hyeon, Donghee Son

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Soft neuroprosthetics that monitor signals from sensory neurons and deliver motor information can potentially replace damaged nerves. However, achieving long-term stability of devices interfacing peripheral nerves is challenging, since dynamic mechanical deformations in peripheral nerves cause material degradation in devices. Here, a durable and fatigue-resistant soft neuroprosthetic device is reported for bidirectional signaling on peripheral nerves. The neuroprosthetic device is made of a nanocomposite of gold nanoshell (AuNS)-coated silver (Ag) flakes dispersed in a tough, stretchable, and self-healing polymer (SHP). The dynamic self-healing property of the nanocomposite allows the percolation network of AuNS-coated flakes to rebuild after degradation. Therefore, its degraded electrical and mechanical performance by repetitive, irregular, and intense deformations at the device–nerve interface can be spontaneously self-recovered. When the device is implanted on a rat sciatic nerve, stable bidirectional signaling is obtained for over 5 weeks. Neural signals collected from a live walking rat using these neuroprosthetics are analyzed by a deep neural network to predict the joint position precisely. This result demonstrates that durable soft neuroprosthetics can facilitate collection and analysis of large-sized in vivo data for solving challenges in neurological disorders.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAdvanced Materials
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • conducting nanocomposites
  • fatigue-resistant nanocomposites
  • in vivo bidirectional signaling
  • soft peripheral neuroprosthetics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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