Mechanoneural interfaces for bionic integration

Shu, T., Herrera-Arcos, G., Taylor, C.R. et al. Mechanoneural interfaces for bionic integration. Nat Rev Bioeng (2024).


Our expanding expertise in peripheral nerve regeneration and soft tissue reconstruction is enabling the development of novel innervated tissue constructs that can be combined with artificial interfacing technologies to facilitate control and sensation of limb prostheses. By utilizing the body’s native afferent and efferent signalling pathways, these mechanoneural interfaces have demonstrated the capacity to enhance volitional prosthetic control, refer somatosensory sensation within proprioceptive and cutaneous modalities, and reduce post-amputation pain. This Review discusses the biophysical principles underpinning recent advancements in targeted reinnervation techniques, regenerative peripheral nerve interfaces and agonist–antagonist neuromuscular architectures that can be combined with artificial technologies, including implanted electrodes, magnetic interfacing and osseointegrated structures, for improved integration with upper-extremity and lower-extremity prostheses. Expanding the capacity for bidirectional information transfer between the peripheral nervous system and external assistive devices will increase the potential of prosthetic embodiment and rehabilitation.

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