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EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL AND REHABILITATION MEDICINE

A Journal on Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation after Pathological Events


Official Journal of the Italian Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (SIMFER), European Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (ESPRM), European Union of Medical Specialists - Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine Section (UEMS-PRM), Mediterranean Forum of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (MFPRM), Hellenic Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (EEFIAP)
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European Journal of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine 2012 June;48(2):307-12

language: English

Cortical plasticity and brain computer interface

Rossini P. M. 1, 2, Noris Ferilli M. A. 1, Ferreri F. 3, 4

1 Department of Neurology, Catholic University, Rome, Italy;
2 IRCCS S. Raffaele Pisana, Rome & Casa di Cura, S. Raffaele, Cassino, Frosinone, Italy;
3 Department of Neurology, University Campus Bio-Medico, Rome, Italy;
4 Clinical Neurophysiology, University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland


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There is increasing evidence to support the concept that adult brain has the remarkable ability to plastically reorganize itself. Brain plasticity involves distinct functional and structural components and plays a crucial role in reorganizing central nervous system’s networks after any lesion in order to partly or totally restore lost and/or compromised functions. The idea that a computer can decode brain electromagnetic signals to infer the intentions of a human and then enact those intentions directly through a machine is becoming a reasonable technical possibility. In neurological patients unable to move and to communicate with the external environment, technologies implementing brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) can be of valuable aid and support. The emerging possibility, through neuro-imaging advanced techniques, to clarify some crucial issues underlying brain plasticity will give the possibility to modulate these mechanisms in a BCI-oriented way. This approach may have a tremendous impact in a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders and the clinical advent of this technology will usher in a new era of restorative medicine.

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paolomaria.rossini@afar.it