Online Master's in Biomedical Engineering @
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Dustin J. Tyler, B.S. EE, Ph.D. BME

Functional Neural Interface Lab

The purpose of our research is to improve human neurologic health and function through the integration of engineered devices into living systems.  The research goal is to advance the field of Neural Engineering in three specific areas:

(i) Clinical implementation of devices in neural prosthesis systems for individuals with diseased or compromised neural systems. The specific research projects ongoing are (a) neural interfaces for amputee prostheses; (b) stimulation paradigms for natural sensation and improved fuction; (c) dynamic laryngotracheal closure; and (d) implementation of peripheral nerve electrodes in functional restoration in individuals with spinal cord injury.

Amputees that can feel ...

8 Oct 2014 STM Cover



(ii) Advanced devices to improve extraction of information from and activation of the human nervous system. The specific research projects ongoing are (a) advanced Flat Interface Nerve Electrodes (FINE) with increased contact density, optimized contact layout, and inclusion of circuitry directly on the electrode; (b) investigation of genetic algorithms and high-density stimulation paradigms for more selective peripheral nerve stimulation; and (c) high-density interfascicular stimulation systems.

Example of advanced clinical interfaces:

32 Channel CFINE2 Generations of FINE


(iii) Neuromimetic interfaces between neural tissue and engineered devices. A neuromimetic interface is defined as an electrode, polymer, or other device or material that mimics the mechanical, chemical, and/or electrical properties of neural tissue. The purpose is to integrate devices that behave as though they were natural neural tissue. The specific research projects ongoing are (a) peripheral nerve electrodes combining electrical and optical stimulation techinques, and (b) polymeric fiber substrates with mechanical properties similar to neural tissue for use in cortical electrodes.

Example of biomimetic materials based on sea cucumber...

  Nature: Nano Cover

The research projects include elements from basic, applied, and clinical research, or each phase of the "bench-to-bedside" process. It is envisioned to generate a pipeline of complementary research projects for development of neural prostheses.