Science and Engineering

University of Washington

Andrea Stocco, Chantel Prat, Rajesh Rao
Seattle, WA
$1,000,000
June 2014

A team at the University of Washington recently demonstrated the world’s first brain-to-brain interface in humans.  This demonstration involved the transfer of the intention to move the right hand from a sender brain to a receiver brain located across campus.  The goal of the current proposal is to advance the methods and science that made this first brain to brain interface possible, with the goal of systematically increasing the complexity of thoughts, intentions, and mental states that can reliably be transferred from one human brain to another.  To do so, advances in computer science and neuroscience must be made to enhance the “neural bridge” connecting the brains to one another.  The team has organized its efforts in building this bridge into four aims: (1) to reverse-engineer the neural code for representing complex thoughts, (2) to improve thought decoding capabilities, (3) to advance brain stimulation protocols, and (4) to characterize the unique and invariant features of information representation necessary for translating a meaningful code from one brain to another.  Advancing these capabilities will have major implications for transmitting nonverbal information from one mind to another, with possible applications in neuroscience, education and health care.

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