NeuroLife Clinical Trial

Support the research with your donations here (must search “NeuroTech” and specify Fund # 316506) Identifier: NCT01997125     Reanimation in Tetraplegia

Status: Closed, term of funding elapsed

A clinical study enrolling individuals with C4-6 SCI who are >1 year post-injury and neurologically stable. This brain-computer interface (BCI) study showed how an investigational brain implant can be used with forearm muscle stimulation to enable paralyzed individuals to regain hand function.

The BCI uses a 96-channel motor cortex Utah array, Neuroport data acquisition system (Blackrock Microsystems, Inc.), custom machine learning algorithms, and the NeuroLife neuromuscular stimulation system (Battelle Memorial Institute).

Media Links:

  1. 2019 Columbus Business First: Hope on Hold
  2. 2019 Reddit IamA…AskMeAnything
  3. NVIDIA blog: How neural networks can read thoughts and restore movements to paralyzed limbs
  4. 2018 article    and   The Spark S1 (Ep1) 2018 video
  5. The Electric Brain: Mind Field S2 (Ep8) Jan 2018 on YouTube Red by vsauce
  6. Columbus Monthly 2017 article
  7. Freethink 2017 video
  8. WIRED video
  9. Mashable 2016 article
  10. Nature 2016 video
  11. The Scarlet Scoop: Wexner brain implant allows paralyzed man to move hand 2016 video
  12. Ohio State University Alumni Magazine 2016 article
  13. Battelle YouTube technology updates
  14. Battelle NeuroLife blog
  15. Battelle NeuroLife technical development website



  • Marcie Bockbrader$, Nicholas Annetta, David Friedenberg, Michael Schwemmer, Nicholas Skomrock, Samuel Colachis IV, Mingming Zhang, Chad Bouton, Ali Rezai, Gaurav Sharma, W. Jerry Mysiw. Clinically significant gains in skillful grasp coordination by an individual with tetraplegia using an implanted brain-computer interface with forearm transcutaneous muscle stimulation. Archives of PM&R. 2019 Mar 20. doi: 1016/j.apmr.2018.07.445 PMID: 30902630
  • Marcie Bockbrader. Upper limb sensorimotor restoration through brain-computer interface technology in tetraparesis. Current Opinion in Biomedical Engineering 2019 doi: 10.1016/j.cobme.2019.09.002
  • Collin Dunlap, Luke Bird, Ian Burkhart, Kaitie Eipel, Sam Colachis, Robert Franklin, Marcus Gerhardt, Aniruddh Ravindran, Ali Hassani, Dimitar Filev, Florian Solzbacher$, Marcie Bockbrader$. Towards a Brain-Machine Interface for Intelligent Vehicle Systems Control – A CARLA Demonstration. IEEE System, Man, and Cybernetics (in press) 2019
  • Ganzer PD, Colachis SC, Swiftney CE, Schwemmer MA, Friedenberg DA, Jacobowitz AF, Zhang M, Weber DJ, Bockbrader MA$, Sharma G$ Augmenting Quadriplegic Hand Function Using a Sensorimotor Demultiplexing Neural Interface


  • Madeleine E Hackney, Lise Worthen-Chaudhari, Amit Abraham, Marcia A. Bockbrader. Motor-cognitive interaction: The role and measurement of engagement. Brain, Body, Cognition. 2018;8(3):251-266.
  • Nicholas D. Skomrock, Michael A. Schwemmer, Jordan E. Ting, Hemang R. Trivedi, Gaurav Sharma, Marcia A. Bockbrader$, David A. Friedenberg$. A Characterization of Brain-Computer Interface Performance Trade-Offs Using Support Vector Machines and Deep Neural Networks to Decode Movement Intent. Front. Neurosci. 2018-October-24 2018;12(763). doi:10.3389/fnins.2018.00763 PMID: 30459542
  • Michael A. Schwemmer, Nicholas D. Skomrock, Per B. Sederberg, Jordyn E. Ting, Gaurav Sharma, Marcia A. Bockbrader$, David A. Friedenberg$ “Meeting brain-computer interface user performance expectations using a deep neural network decoding framework” Nature Medicine. Sept 24, 2018. doi: 10.1038/s41591-018-0171-y PMID: 30250141
  • Samuel C. Colachis IV, Marcie A. Bockbrader$, Mingming Zhang, David A. Friedenberg, Nicholas V. Annetta, Michael A. Schwemmer, Nicholas D. Skomrock, W. Jerry Mysiw, Ali R. Rezai, Herbert S. Bresler, Gaurav Sharma$. “Dexterous Control of Seven Functional Hand Movements Using Cortically-Controlled Transcutaneous Muscle Stimulation in a Person with Tetraplegia” Frontiers in Neuroscience. 2018,12(208). doi: 10.3389/fnins.2018.00208 PMID: 29670506
  • Marcie Bockbrader, Gerard Francisco, Ray Lee, Jared Olson, Ryan Solinsky, Michael Boninger$, “Brain Computer Interfaces In Rehabilitation Medicine”, PM&R. August 2018, 10(9): S233-S243.  doi: 10.1016/j.pmrj.2018.05.028 PMID: 30269808
  • Mingming Zhang, Michael Schwemmer, Jordan Ting, Connor Majstorovic , David A Friedenberg, Marcie A Bockbrader, W. Jerry Mysiw, Ali R Rezai, Nicholas Annetta, Chad Bouton, Herbert Bresler, Gaurav Sharma$. “Extracting wavelet based neural features from human intracortical recordings for neuroprosthetics applications.” Bioelectronic Medicine. 2018;4:11.
  • Nicholas Annetta, Jeff Friend, Andrew Schimmoeller, Vimal S. Buck, David Friedenberg, Chad Bouton, Marcie Bockbrader$, Patrick Ganzer, Sam Colachis, Mingming Zhang, W. Jerry Mysiw, Ali Rezai, Gaurav Sharma$. “A novel high definition non-invasive neuromuscular electrical stimulation system for cortical control of combinatorial rotary hand movements in a human with tetraplegia” IEEE EMBC, 2018, doi: 10.1109/TBME.2018.2864104 PMID: 30106673
  • Marcie Bockbrader$, Kaitie Eipel, David Friedenberg, Gaurav Sharma.  “Clinical Performance Evaluation for a Take-home Brain Computer Interface for Grasp”, Conf Proc IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC), 2018.
  • David Friedenberg$, Michael Schwemmer, Nicholas Skomrock, Per Sederberg, Jordyn Ting, Marcia Bockbrader$, Gaurav Sharma. (2018) “Neural Decoding Algorithm Requirements for a Take-home Brain Computer Interface”, Conf Proc IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC), 2018.
  • Sheital Bavishi, Joseph Rosenthal, Marcia Bockbrader. Ch 16. Neuroprosthetics. In: Rehabilitation after Traumatic Brain Injury. Edited by: Blessen Eapen and David Cifu. Elsevier. February 2018. ISBN-13: 9780323544566.


  • David A. Friedenberg$, Nicholas V. Annetta, Andrew Landgraf, Michael Schwemmer, Marcia A. Bockbrader, Chad E. Bouton, Mingming Zhang, Ali R. Rezai$, Jerry Mysiw, Herbert S. Bresler, Gaurav Sharma. “Neuroprosthetic-enabled control of graded arm muscle contraction in a paralyzed human” Nature Scientific Reports. 2017 August 16;7:8386. doi:10.1038/s41598-017-08120-9
  • Gaurav Sharma$, Nick Annetta, Dave Friedenberg, Marcie Bockbrader$. Advances in BCI: A Neural Bypass Technology to Reconnect the Brain to the Body. In: Brain-Computer Interface Research: A State-of-the-Art Summary 6. Edited by: Christoph Guger, et al. Springer. August 2017. pp-9-20. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-64373-1_2


  • Chad E Bouton$, Shaikhouni A, Annetta NV, Bockbrader MA, Friedenberg DA, Nielson DM, Sharma G, Sederberg PB, Glenn BC, Mysiw WJ, Morgan AG, Deogaonkar M, Rezai AR$. “Restoring cortical control of functional movement in a human with quadriplegia” Nature. 2016 May 12;533(7602):247-50. doi: 10.1038/nature17435. PMID:   27074513
  • Gaurav Sharma, Friedenberg DA, Annetta N, Glenn B, Bockbrader M, Majstorovic C, Domas S, Mysiw WJ, Rezai A$, Bouton C$. “Using an Artificial Neural Bypass to Restore Cortical Control of Rhythmic Movements in a Human with Quadriplegia” Sci Rep. 2016 Sep 23;6:33807. doi: 10.1038/srep33807. PMID: 27658585
  • David A. Friedenberg$, Chad E. Bouton, Nicholas Annetta, Nicholas Skomrock, Mimgming Zhang, Michael Schwemmer, Marcie Bockbrader, W. Mysiw, Ali Rezai$, Herb Bresler, and Gaurav Sharma. (2016) “Big Data Challenges in Decoding Human Brain Data to Inform a Brain Computer Interface”, Conf Proc IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC), Oct 2016: Doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2016.7591381. PMID: 28268963

$ Senior authors