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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Neurosci. | doi: 10.3389/fnins.2019.00847

Long-term sheep implantation of WIMAGINE®, a wireless 64-channels electrocorticogram recorder

 Fabien SAUTER-STARACE1*, David RATEL1,  Celine CRETALLAZ1, Michael FOERSTER1, Aurelien LAMBERT1,  Christophe GAUDE1, Thomas COSTECALDE1,  Stephane Bonnet1, Guillaume CHARVET1,  Tetiana Aksenova1, Corinne MESTAIS1,  Alim L. Benabid1 and  Napoleon R. Torres Martinez1
  • 1CEA LETI, France

This paper deals with the long-term preclinical validation of WIMAGINE® (Wireless Implantable Multi-channel Acquisition system for Generic Interface with NEurons), a 64-channel wireless implantable recorder that measures the electrical activity at the cortical surface (electrocorticography, ECoG). The WIMAGINE® implant was designed for chronic wireless neuronal signal acquisition, to be used e.g. as an intracranial Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) for severely motor-impaired patients. Due to the size and shape of WIMAGINE®, sheep appeared to be the best animal model on which to carry out long-term in vivo validation. The devices were implanted in two sheep for a follow-up period of 10 months, including idle state cortical recordings and Somato-Sensory Evoked Potential (SSEP) sessions. ECoG and SSEP demonstrated relatively stable behavior during the 10-month observation period. Information recorded from the SensoriMotor Cortex (SMC) showed an SSEP phase reversal, indicating the cortical site of the sensorimotor activity was retained after 10 months of contact. Based on weekly recordings of raw ECoG signals, the effective bandwidth was in the range of 230Hz for both animals and remarkably stable over time, meaning preservation of the high frequency bands valuable for decoding of the brain activity using BCIs. The power spectral density (in dB/Hz), on a log scale, was of the order of 2.2, -4.5 and -18 for the frequency bands [10-40], [40-100] and [100-200]Hz, respectively. The outcome of this preclinical work is the first long-term in vivo validation of the WIMAGINE® implant, highlighting its ability to record the brain electrical activity through the dura mater and to send wireless digitized data to the external base station. Apart from local adhesion of the dura to the skull, the neurosurgeon did not face any difficulty in the implantation of the WIMAGINE® device and post-mortem analysis of the brain revealed no side effect related to the implantation. We also report on the reliability of the system; including the implantable device, the antennas module and the external base station

Keywords: Long-term implantation, wireless communications, Brain-computer interface, Electrocorticogram (ECoG), Signal quality, Local tolerance, Sheep

Received: 31 Jan 2019; Accepted: 30 Jul 2019.

Edited by:

Christoph Guger, g.tec medical engineering GmbH, Austria

Reviewed by:

Tonio Ball, Department of Neurosurgery, University Hospital Freiburg, Germany
Ewan Nurse, The University of Melbourne, Australia  

Copyright: © 2019 SAUTER-STARACE, RATEL, CRETALLAZ, FOERSTER, LAMBERT, GAUDE, COSTECALDE, Bonnet, CHARVET, Aksenova, MESTAIS, Benabid and Torres Martinez. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: PhD. Fabien SAUTER-STARACE, CEA LETI, Grenoble, France, fabien.sauter@cea.fr