Researchers claim to improve human memory with implanted electrodes

In a small study, USC’s Dong Song demonstrated the efficacy of an implantable “memory prosthesis.”   Dr. Song presented his work at the Society for Neuroscience conference in Washington this week.

20 volunteers had the device implanted at the same time as electrodes for epilepsy treatment, a procedure which they had already planned.

The “prosthesis” collected brain activity data during tests designed to stimulate  short-term memory or working memory. The researchers then determined and used optimal memory performance patterns to stimulate the brain during later tests.

They claimed that the procedure improved short-term memory by  approximately 15 percent, and working memory by 25 percent. When the brain was stimulated randomly, performance worsened.

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