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Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IAPP | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2013-IAPP | Award Amount: 1.60M | Year: 2014

Multichannel electroencephalography (EEG) is a well-established method for investigating the function of the human brain, but, despite continuous advancements in signal amplification and data processing, difficult and error-prone signal acquisition on the head surface is still a major issue limiting its employment in basic and clinical research. The ANDREA project will develop a novel dry electrode EEG system with adjustable cap network provided with an automated sensor positioning mechanism, active preamplification and a SW toolbox for artefacts removal. The novel technologies address the requirements of high signal quality and reliability, mobility, high patient/subject comfort and long-term use, and will be validated in clinical and non clinical populations to produce a prototype optimized for broad EEG employment. To achieve these objectives, the ANDREA consortium 1) merges the complementary expertise and resources in biomedical engineering, material science, biomedical signal processing, neuroscience and clinical neurology available at 3 academic and 2 commercial (industry and health) partners from 3 EU countries, and 2) realizes an extensive intersectoral transfer of knowledge through staff exchange, training courses, schools, and the recruitment of experienced researchers with supplementary expertise from outside the consortium. The international mobility and the planned dissemination/outreach activities will contribute to the sharing of different cultures and knowledge with the scientific community, and to promote a broader communication on the importance of research in biomedical engineering to the society at large. The tight scientific collaboration and the transfer of knowledge among partners will enhance the research capacity and competitiveness of the ANDREA consortium, which will become a permanent EU research network promoting health technology in Europe, with great benefits for the European biomedical industries, health care systems and societies.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2009.7.2 | Award Amount: 3.66M | Year: 2010

A lack of mobility often leads to limited participation in social life. The purpose of this STREP is to conceive a system empowering lower limbs disabled people with walking abilities that let them perform their usual daily activities in the most autonomous and natural manner. New smart dry EEG bio-sensors will be applied to enable lightweight wearable EEG caps for everyday use. Novel approaches to non-invasive BCI will be experimented in order to control a purpose-designed lower limbs orthosis enabling different types of gaits. Complementary research on EMG processing will strengthen the approach. A Virtual Reality (VR) training environment will assist the patients in generating the correct brain control signals and in properly using the orthosis. The main BCI approach relies on Dynamic Recurrent Neural Network (DRNN) technology applied in a two stages process. After learning, the system will be able to match EMG signals to legs movements (Stage 2), and EEG to such EMG signals (Stage 1). The Stage 2 has already been successfully demonstrated by a project partner. The orthosis will be designed to support the weight of an adult, to address the dynamic stability of a body-exoskeleton combined system, and to enable different walking modalities. The VR training environment will comprise both a set of components for the progressive patient training under a safe and controlled medical environment, and a lightweight portable set using immersive VR solutions for self-training at home. The developed technologies will be assessed and validated with the support of a formal clinical validation procedure. This will allow to measure the strengths and weaknesses of the chosen approaches and to identify improvements required to build a future commercial system. In addition the resulting system will be progressively tested in everyday life environments and situations, ranging from simple activities at home to eventually shopping and interacting with people in the street.

Bocquillon P.,Lille University Medical Center | Bourriez J.-L.,Lille University Medical Center | Bourriez J.-L.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Palmero-Soler E.,Eemagine Medical Imaging Solutions GmbH | And 6 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2015

Introduction: The selection of task-relevant information requires both the focalization of attention on the task and resistance to interference from irrelevant stimuli. A previous study using the P3 component of the event-related potentials suggested that a reduced ability to resist interference could be responsible for attention disorders at early stages of Parkinson's disease (PD), with a possible role of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). Methods: Our objective was to better determine the origin of this impairment, by studying an earlier ERP component, the N2, and its subcomponents, as they reflect early inhibition processes and as they are known to have sources in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), which is involved together with the DLPFC in inhibition processes. Fifteen early-stage PD patients and 15 healthy controls (HCs) performed a three-stimulus visual oddball paradigm, consisting in detecting target inputs amongst standard stimuli, while resisting interference from distracter ones. A 128-channel electroencephalogram was recorded during this task and the generators of the N2 subcomponents were identified using standardized weighted low-resolution electromagnetic tomography (swLORETA). Results: PD patients displayed fewer N2 generators than HCs in both the DLPFC and the ACC, for all types of stimuli. In contrast to controls, PD patients did not show any differences between their generators for different N2 subcomponents. Conclusion: Our data suggest that impaired inhibition in PD results from dysfunction of the DLPFC and the ACC during the early stages of attentional processes. © 2015 Bocquillon et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Fiedler P.,TU Ilmenau | Brodkorb S.,TU Ilmenau | Fonseca C.,University of Porto | Vaz F.,University of Minho | And 3 more authors.
IFMBE Proceedings | Year: 2010

Usability of conventional wet electrodes for electroencephalography (EEG) is depending on a set of requirements, including time consuming and complex preparation of the skin of a subject, thus limiting possible application. A new class of "dry" electrodes without the need for electrolyte gels or pastes is being investigated. The dry application scenario of these novel electrodes requires a stable and reliable contact with the subject's skin. In order to develop an electrode shape with large contact surface for low electrode-skin impedance while also ensuring a sufficient hair layer penetration, several studies were performed. In this paper a distinct titanium electrode substrate shape for titanium nitride (TiN) coated electrodes was analyzed regarding influences of the number of interconnected electrodes and contact surface on electrodeskin impedance and biosignal quality. As a result 10 interconnected TiN pins had the lowest impedance values of 14 to 55 kΩ (depending on signal frequency) in comparison to 2 to 44 kΩ using conventional Ag/AgCl electrodes. Also the mean average deviation (MAD) of 5 seconds long EEG episodes were computed. The lowest MADs of 2.00 to 2.25 μV were determined using three interconnected TiN pins. In comparison to MADs of 2.13 to 2.54 μV, using a second set of Ag/AgCl electrodes, this leads to the conclusion that most of the error was related to spatial distance. This first step in optimization of electrode shape for dry TiN based electrodes showed very promising results and enable their use for EEG acquisition. © 2010 International Federation for Medical and Biological Engineering.

Bocquillon P.,University of Lille Nord de France | Bocquillon P.,Laboratory Neurosciences Fonctionnelles et Pathologies | Bocquillon P.,Lille University Medical Center | Bourriez J.-L.,Laboratory Neurosciences Fonctionnelles et Pathologies | And 13 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Background: The selection of task-relevant information requires both the focalization of attention on the task and resistance to interference from irrelevant stimuli. Both mechanisms rely on a dorsal frontoparietal network, while focalization additionally involves a ventral frontoparietal network. The role of subcortical structures in attention is less clear, despite the fact that the striatum interacts significantly with the frontal cortex via frontostriatal loops. One means of investigating the basal ganglia's contributions to attention is to examine the features of P300 components (i.e. amplitude, latency, and generators) in patients with basal ganglia damage (such as in Parkinson's disease (PD), in which attention is often impaired). Three-stimulus oddball paradigms can be used to study distracter-elicited and target-elicited P300 subcomponents. Methodology/Principal Findings: In order to compare distracter- and target-elicited P300 components, high-density (128-channel) electroencephalograms were recorded during a three-stimulus visual oddball paradigm in 15 patients with early PD and 15 matched healthy controls. For each subject, the P300 sources were localized using standardized weighted low-resolution electromagnetic tomography (swLORETA). Comparative analyses (one-sample and two-sample t-tests) were performed using SPM5® software. The swLORETA analyses showed that PD patients displayed fewer dorsolateral prefrontal (DLPF) distracter-P300 generators but no significant differences in target-elicited P300 sources; this suggests dysfunction of the DLPF cortex when the executive frontostriatal loop is disrupted by basal ganglia damage. Conclusions/Significance: Our results suggest that the cortical attention frontoparietal networks (mainly the dorsal one) are modulated by the basal ganglia. Disruption of this network in PD impairs resistance to distracters, which results in attention disorders. © 2012 Bocquillon et al.

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