Advanced Neuromodulation Technology for Neurological Disorders
Develop a closed-loop, implantable neurostimulation system that responds to neurophysiological signals, for the treatment of serious neurological and psychiatric disorders, including Parkinson's disease and major depressive disorders.
Sponsor: NeuroPace, Inc1375 Shorebird Way
Mountain View, CA 94043-1322
Neurostimulation—precisely applied electrical stimulation to specific portions of the brain—has been demonstrated to be an effective therapy for several serious neurological and psychiatric disorders, including Parkinson's disease, major depressive disorder (MDD), chronic pain, essential tremor, and others. Most existing neurostimulation treatments, however, are simply used either continuously or on a timetable, without reference to the patient's neurological activity. NeuroPace is pioneering the use of an implantable "closed-loop" neuromodulation technology that synchronizes neurostimulation with brain activity, and that potentially can be used to treat a wide range of neuro1ogical diseases. The proposed innovations will add the ability to monitor continuously key neurophysiological variables in the brain that have been correlated with neurological disorders, including neuronal activity, blood flow, blood oxygenation and neurotransmitter levels, and deliver electrical stimulation to the brain in response to, for example, an abrupt change in a key indicator. The proposed technology must overcome significant obstacles. The monitoring system must be miniaturized to fit an implantable system, use low power, have low computational demands, and be rugged enough to function and provide stable measurements over the life of the device. The technology must also be safe, in that the materials must be biocompatible. It also must be shown to provide a significant improvement for the patient. If successful, this advanced neuromodulation therapy will significantly benefit patients suffering from intractable neurological diseases, their caregivers and employers, and the medical device industry. The economic burden of these diseases on the nation is tremendous, estimated at over $100 billion annually.