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Neurophotonics

Infrared neural stimulation of human spinal nerve roots in vivo
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Paper Abstract

Infrared neural stimulation (INS) is a neurostimulation modality that uses pulsed infrared light to evoke artifact-free, spatially precise neural activity with a noncontact interface; however, the technique has not been demonstrated in humans. The objective of this study is to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of INS in humans in vivo. The feasibility of INS in humans was assessed in patients (n=7) undergoing selective dorsal root rhizotomy, where hyperactive dorsal roots, identified for transection, were stimulated in vivo with INS on two to three sites per nerve with electromyogram recordings acquired throughout the stimulation. The stimulated dorsal root was removed and histology was performed to determine thermal damage thresholds of INS. Threshold activation of human dorsal rootlets occurred in 63% of nerves for radiant exposures between 0.53 and 1.23  J/cm2. In all cases, only one or two monitored muscle groups were activated from INS stimulation of a hyperactive spinal root identified by electrical stimulation. Thermal damage was first noted at 1.09  J/cm2 and a 2∶1 safety ratio was identified. These findings demonstrate the success of INS as a fresh approach for activating human nerves in vivo and providing the necessary safety data needed to pursue clinically driven therapeutic and diagnostic applications of INS in humans.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 February 2015
PDF: 9 pages
2(1) 015007 doi: 10.1117/1.NPh.2.1.015007
Published in: Neurophotonics Volume 2, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Jonathan M. Cayce, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
Jonathon D. Wells, Lockheed Martin Aculight (United States)
Jonathan D. Malphrus, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
Chris Kao, Vanderbilt Univ. Medical Ctr. (United States)
Sharon Thomsen, The Univ. of Texas at Austin (United States)
Noel B. Tulipan, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
Peter E. Konrad, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
Vanderbilt University (United States)
E. Duco Jansen, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
(United States)
Anita Mahadevan-Jansen, Vanderbilt Univ. (United States)
(United States)


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