The 'Neural Dust' Sensor Can Be Ingested to Monitor Organ Health

By: Joey Haar - Aug 4, 2016
References: news.berkeley.edu & engadget
Like something from an episode of Futurama, the 'Neural Dust' sensor is a minuscule wireless device can be ingested by patients in order to transmit information about their intestinal health. Developed by a team of scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, the Neural Dust sensor is approximately the size of a grain of sand, making it an uninvasive technique for monitoring an array of medical data.

The Neural Dust sensor uses ultrasound technology to both power it and help it read out measurements. The benefit of using ultrasound to charge the device is that it defeats the need for a battery, allowing Neural Dust to have a far longer life inside a patient's organs, muscles, or nerves.

The tiny sensors can also be adjusted to stimulate nerves (as opposed to passively monitoring them,) opening up the possibility of paraplegic and quadriplegic patients using the Neural Dust to control robotic arms and legs.