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Problem Addressed

Deep brain stimulation using neural implants is an effective treatment for several neurological circuit disorders. Electrodes are surgically implanted into the brain and may perform a variety of functions besides stimulation, such as releasing pharmaceutical compounds or monitoring neural activity. However, long term biocompatibility remains a problem due to normal micro-motions of the brain which encourage an inflammatory response in the brain, leading to the development of glial scar tissue. This scar tissue envelopes the implant, creating a barrier between the device and neural cells causing diminished effectiveness or failure of these implants. This technology increases biocompatibility by utilizing a hydrogel coating that more closely mimics the mechanical properties of brain tissue thereby reducing scarring and allowing for long term use of neural implants.