Overcoming technological barriers in wireless brain-machine-body interfaces to empower individuals with multiple sclerosis: the new B-CRATOS paradigm shift begins

2021-03-30

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is one of the world’s most common neurological conditions and the leading cause of non-traumatic disability in young adults, especially women. While there is currently no cure for MS, the condition can be managed through specialized help. The H2020 4 years B-CRATOS project, coordinated by Our Department started on March 1st, 2021 and aims at creating the first battery-free high-speed wireless in-body communication platform to overcome technological barriers and help individuals with MS. 

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is one of the world’s most common neurological conditions and the leading cause of non-traumatic disability in young adults, especially women. Symptoms can range from fatigue and depression to blindness and severe mobility problems in extreme cases. The average age at diagnosis is 29, and half of the individuals with this condition will usually be unemployed within three years. In Sweden, the prevalence is 189 per 100,000 and the average age at diagnosis is 33. The workforce participation decreases from 80% in the very early stages to less than 10% in the very late stages, which represents about 32% of the total MS cost to the Swedish society.

While there is currently no cure for MS, the condition can be managed through specialized help. In those extreme cases with severe mobility problems and blindness, neural prostheses play a key role to help these individuals to recover their lives to normality. However, today, due to different technological barriers a completely normal life is mainly difficult to fully recover. Among the barriers, the implementation of wireless high-speed body-compliant connectivity between the brain, the prosthesis or assisting device and the body, the Brain-Machine-Body (BMB) connectivity, is key.

The H2020 4 years B-CRATOS project, coordinated by Dr. Robin Augustine – Associate Professor at Uppsala University, Department of Electrical Engineering, Division of Solid-State Electronics – started on March 1st, 2021 and aims at creating the first battery-free high-speed wireless in-body communication platform to overcome the BMB connectivity barrier. Highly ambitious, this collaborative enterprise merges expertise and cutting-edge technologies from the fields of novel wireless communication, neuroscience, bionics, artificial intelligence and sensing.

Read the B-CRATOS Initial Press Release 18.03.21

Information about Multple Sclerosis (MS) and MS in Sweden extracted from EMSP (European Multiple Sclerosis Platform).

B-CRATOS project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No. 965044.

Picture of the consortium taken during the successful kick-off meeting on March 18th, 2021 with 47 participants including members of the Ångström research groups: Flexible Electronics, Emerging Electronics and Microwaves in Medical Engineering at the Division of Solid-State Electronics.

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Last modified: 2021-04-18