The Another

    a paraplegic manages to walk again by controlling his legs by thought – Liberation



    Disability in everyday lifecase

    After ten years of research, a Franco-Swiss team has developed a technology that restores communication between the brain and the spinal cord. A first.

    Thanks to a team of Franco-Swiss researchers, Ger-Jan Oskam became the first paraplegic man in history capable of moving his legs by thought. A major breakthrough in the field of neuroscience that gives hope to people with reduced mobility.

    The researchers developed a coupling of two technologies in order to restore communication between the brain and the spinal cord. Their research was recently published in the journal Nature.

    “I regained freedom”, is moved the happy patient, a Dutch quadra. After a bicycle accident, his spinal cord was damaged at the level of the vertebrae. Today, he can now stand up, move over varied terrain and even climb stairs.

    This result is the fruit of more than ten years of research by teams in France and Switzerland. The spinal cord, contained by the vertebral column, extends the brain and controls many movements. These can therefore be irretrievably lost if the contact with the brain is damaged.

    Before Oksam, other patients who could no longer move their legs benefited from advances allowing them to walk again. But for the first time, this man can again control by thought the movement of his legs and the rhythm of his steps, underlines the study.


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