January/February 2021

A Step Closer to Mind Control for Everyday Life

Author(s): Mary Bates
A Step Closer to Mind Control for Everyday Life 2032 1475 IEEE Pulse
Brain–computer interface (BCI) technology holds promise for providing functional support systems for people with neurological disorders and other disabilities. In experimental laboratory settings, BCIs have allowed patients to communicate with researchers and control external devices—all by simply imagining the actions of different body parts. read more

New Advances in Neurostimulation for Chronic Pain

Author(s): Summer Allen
New Advances in Neurostimulation for Chronic Pain 2210 1356 IEEE Pulse
Around 50 million people in the United States live with—and suffer from—chronic pain. While some pain patients receive relief from physical therapy, medication, or surgery, others aren’t helped by these treatments. “It’s a debilitating situation,” says Ryan Lakin, divisional vice president of R&D at Abbott. “Patients have trouble just living a normal life, doing a lot of things that we take for granted.” read more

New Vaccine-Manufacturing Methods Are Moving Away From the Egg

Author(s): Leslie Mertz
New Vaccine-Manufacturing Methods Are Moving Away From the Egg 2121 1414 IEEE Pulse
With seasonal influenza, Ebola, shingles, pneumonia, human papillomavirus, and other pathogens—combined now with the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2)—the world’s demand for vaccines is on a steep incline. New vaccine development is progressing rapidly, as seen with recent announcements of coronavirus options [1], [2], but what about their manufacture? read more

The Brain on COVID-19

Author(s): Jennifer Berglund
The Brain on COVID-19 1500 844 IEEE Pulse
In March 2020 —still the early days of the U.K.’s COVID-19 crisis—Rhys Thomas, a neurologist at Newcastle University, got a call at home from a concerned colleague. The colleague’s cousin was hospitalized, critically ill with COVID-19, and had developed brainstem encephalitis, a severe inflammatory condition of the brain causing a suite of symptoms, from eye problems to balance problems and drowsiness. He wanted to know if Thomas knew anything about these conditions. At the time, the research coming out of Wuhan, China, only suggested a mild whiff of neurological ­symptoms—headache, dizziness, and the loss of taste and smell. read more