A specialised microchip that could communicate with thousands of individual brain cells has been developed by European scientists. The device will help researchers examine the workings of interconnected brain cells, and might one day enable them to develop computers that use live neurons for memory. The computer chip is capable of receiving signals from more than 16,000 mammalian brain cells, and sending messages back to several hundred cells. Previous neuron-computer interfaces have either connected to far fewer individual neurons, or to groups of neurons clumped together.
Chip ramps up neuron-to-computer communication