Wednesday, July 20, 2005


Wiring the Brain at the Nanoscale
Already, the researchers note, physicians routinely use arterial pathways to guide much larger catheter tubes to specific points in the body. This technique is frequently used to study blood flow around the heart, for example.
Following the same logic, the researchers envision connecting an entire array of nanowires to a catheter tube that could then be guided through the circulatory system to the brain. Once there, the wires would spread into a "bouquet," branching out into tinier and tinier blood vessels until they reached specific locations. Each nanowire would then be used to record the electrical activity of a single nerve cell or small groups of them.