Nanotubes could make better brain probes

January 8, 2004 | Source: KurzweilAI

Nanotubes caused less scar tissue and stimulated neurons to grow 60 percent more fingerlike extensions, called neurites, needed to regenerate brain activity in damaged regions, according to a paper in the journal Nanotechnology.

Conventional silicon probes cause the body to regard them as foreign invaders and surround them with scar tissue. The nanotubes were designed so that their surfaces contained nanoscale bumps that mimic features found on the surfaces of natural brain proteins and tissues, causing the formation of less scar tissue.

Purdue University news release