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Biosignal processing and computational methods to enhance sensory motor neuroprosthetics

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889197187 Year: Pages: 228 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-718-7 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2016-04-07 11:22:02
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Though there have been many developments in sensory/motor prosthetics, they have not yet reached the level of standard and worldwide use like pacemakers and cochlear implants. One challenging issue in motor prosthetics is the large variety of patient situations, which depending on the type of neurological disorder. To improve neuroprosthetic performance beyond the current limited use of such systems, robust bio-signal processing and model-based control involving actual sensory motor state (with biosignal feedback) would bring about new modalities and applications, and could be a breakthrough toward adaptive neuroprosthetics. Recent advances of Brain Computer Interfaces (BCI) now enable patients to transmit their intention of movement. However, the functionality and controllability of motor prosthetics itself can be further improved to take advantage of BCI interfaces. In this Research Topic we welcome contribution of original research articles, computational and experimental studies, review articles, and methodological advances related to biosignal processing that may enhance the functionality of sensory motor neuroprosthetics. The scope of this topic includes, but is not limited to, studies aimed at enhancing: 1) computational biosignal processing in EMG (Electromyography), EEG (Electroencephalography), and other modalities of biofeedback information;2) the computational method in modeling and control of sensory motor neuroprosthetics;3) the systematic functionality aiming to provide solutions for specific pathological movement disorders;4) human interfaces such as BCI - but in the case of BCI study, manuscripts should be experimental studies which are applied to sensory/motor neuroprosthetics in patients with motor disabilities.

Integrative Research on Organic Matter Cycling Across Aquatic Gradients

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889452125 Year: Pages: 201 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-212-5 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Oceanography --- Geography
Added to DOAB on : 2017-10-13 14:57:01
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The goal of this research topic was to motivate innovative research that blurs traditional disciplinary and geographical boundaries. As the scientific community continues to gain momentum and knowledge about how the natural world functions, it is increasingly important that we recognize the interconnected nature of earth systems and embrace the complexities of ecosystem transitions. We are pleased to present this body of work, which embodies the spirit of research spanning across the terrestrial-aquatic continuum, from mountains to the sea. Sincerely, The Editors

Interaction of BCI with the underlying neurological conditions in patients: pros and cons

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889194896 Year: Pages: 129 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-489-6 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2015-11-16 15:44:59
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The primary purpose of Brain Computer Interface (BCI) systems is to help patients communicate with their environment or to aid in their recovery. A common denominator for all BCI patient groups is that they suffer from a neurological deficit. As a consequence, BCI systems in clinical and research settings operate with control signals (brain waves) that could be substantially altered compared to brain waves of able-bodied individuals. Most BCI systems are built and tested on able-bodied individuals, being insufficiently robust for clinical applications. The main reason for this is a lack of systematic analysis on how different neurological problems affect the BCI performance. Neurological problems interfering with BCI performance are either a direct cause of a disability (e.g. stroke, autism, epilepsy ) or secondary consequences of a disability, often overlooked in design of BCI systems (chronic pain, spasticity and antispastic drugs, loss of cognitive functions, drowsiness, medications which are increasing/decreasing brain activity in certain frequency range) . While some of these deficits may decrease the performance of a BCI, others may potentially improve its performance compared to BCI tested on a healthy population (e.g. overactivation of motor cortex in patients with Central neuropathic pain (CNP), increased alpha activity in some patient groups). Depending on the neurological condition, a prolonged modulation of brain waves through BCI might produce both positive or detrimental effects. Thus some BCI protocols might be more suitable for a short term use (e.g. rehabilitation of movement) while the others would be more suitable for a long term use. Prolonged self-regulation of brain oscillation through BCI could potentially be used as a treatment for aberrant brain connections for conditions ranging from motor deficits to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Currently, ASD is an increasingly prevalent condition in the U.S. with core deficits in imitation learning, language, empathy, theory of mind, and self-awareness. Understanding its neuroetiology is not only critical and necessary but should provide relevant insights into the relationship between neuroanatomy, physiology and behaviour. In this Research Topic we welcome studies of the highest scientific quality highlighting how BCI systems based on different principles (SSVEP, P300, slow cortical potential, auditory potential, operant conditioning, etc) interact with the underlying neurological problems and how performance of these BCI system differ compared to similar systems tested on healthy individuals. We also welcome studies defining signatures of neurological disorders and proposing BCI based treatments. We expect to generate a body of knowledge valuable both to researchers working with clinical populations, but also to a vast majority of BCI researchers testing new algorithms on able-bodied people. This should lead towards more robust or tailor-made BCI protocols, facilitating translation of research from laboratories to the end users.

Augmentation of Brain Function: Facts, Fiction and Controversy. Volume I: Brain-Machine Interfaces

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889456147 Year: Pages: 666 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-614-7 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Neurology
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-23 14:53:43
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Volume I, entitled “Augmentation of Brain Functions: Brain-Machine Interfaces”, is a collection of articles on neuroprosthetic technologies that utilize brain-machine interfaces (BMIs). BMIs strive to augment the brain by linking neural activity, recorded invasively or noninvasively, to external devices, such as arm prostheses, exoskeletons that enable bipedal walking, means of communication and technologies that augment attention. In addition to many practical applications, BMIs provide useful research tools for basic science. Several articles cover challenges and controversies in this rapidly developing field, such as ways to improve information transfer rate. BMIs can be applied to the awake state of the brain and to the sleep state, as well. BMIs can augment action planning and decision making. Importantly, BMI operations evoke brain plasticity, which can have long-lasting effects. Advanced neural decoding algorithms that utilize optimal feedback controllers are key to the BMI performance. BMI approach can be combined with the other augmentation methods; such systems are called hybrid BMIs. Overall, it appears that BMI will lead to many powerful and practical brain-augmenting technologies in the future.

Augmentation of Brain Function: Facts, Fiction and Controversy. Volume II: Neurostimulation and Pharmacological Approaches

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889456154 Year: Pages: 403 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-615-4 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Neurology
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-23 14:53:43
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The Volume II is entitled “Neurostimulation and pharmacological approaches”. This volume describes augmentation approaches, where improvements in brain functions are achieved by modulation of brain circuits with electrical or optical stimulation, or pharmacological agents. Activation of brain circuits with electrical currents is a conventional approach that includes such methods as (i) intracortical microstimulation (ICMS), (ii) transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), and (iii) transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). tDCS and TMS are often regarded as noninvasive methods. Yet, they may induce long-lasting plastic changes in the brain. This is why some authors consider the term “noninvasive” misleading when used to describe these and other techniques, such as stimulation with transcranial lasers. The volume further discusses the potential of neurostimulation as a research tool in the studies of perception, cognition and behavior. Additionally, a notion is expressed that brain augmentation with stimulation cannot be described as a net zero sum proposition, where brain resources are reallocated in such a way that gains in one function are balanced by costs elsewhere. In recent years, optogenetic methods have received an increased attention, and several articles in Volume II cover different aspects of this technique. While new optogenetic methods are being developed, the classical electrical stimulation has already been utilized in many clinically relevant applications, like the vestibular implant and tactile neuroprosthesis that utilizes ICMS. As a peculiar usage of neurostimulation and pharmacological methods, Volume II includes several articles on augmented memory. Memory prostheses are a popular recent development in the stimulation-based BMIs. For example, in a hippocampal memory prosthesis, memory content is extracted from hippocampal activity using a multiple-input, multiple-output non-linear dynamical model. As to the pharmacological approaches to augmenting memory and cognition, the pros and cons of using nootropic drugs are discussed.

Augmentation of Brain Function: Facts, Fiction and Controversy. Volume III: From Clinical Applications to Ethical Issues and Futuristic Ideas

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889456161 Year: Pages: 338 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-616-1 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Neurology
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-23 14:53:43
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The final volume in this tripartite series on Brain Augmentation is entitled “From Clinical Applications to Ethical Issues and Futuristic Ideas”. Many of the articles within this volume deal with translational efforts taking the results of experiments on laboratory animals and applying them to humans. In many cases, these interventions are intended to help people with disabilities in such a way so as to either restore or extend brain function. Traditionally, therapies in brain augmentation have included electrical and pharmacological techniques. In contrast, some of the techniques discussed in this volume add specificity by targeting select neural populations. This approach opens the door to where and how to promote the best interventions. Along the way, results have empowered the medical profession by expanding their understanding of brain function. Articles in this volume relate novel clinical solutions for a host of neurological and psychiatric conditions such as stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, epilepsy, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, autism spectrum disorders (ASD), traumatic brain injury, and disorders of consciousness. In disease, symptoms and signs denote a departure from normal function. Brain augmentation has now been used to target both the core symptoms that provide specificity in the diagnosis of a disease, as well as other constitutional symptoms that may greatly handicap the individual. The volume provides a report on the use of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in ASD with reported improvements of core deficits (i.e., executive functions). TMS in this regard departs from the present-day trend towards symptomatic treatment that leaves unaltered the root cause of the condition. In diseases, such as schizophrenia, brain augmentation approaches hold promise to avoid lengthy pharmacological interventions that are usually riddled with side effects or those with limiting returns as in the case of Parkinson’s disease. Brain stimulation can also be used to treat auditory verbal hallucination, visuospatial (hemispatial) neglect, and pain in patients suffering from multiple sclerosis. The brain acts as a telecommunication transceiver wherein different bandwidth of frequencies (brainwave oscillations) transmit information. Their baseline levels correlate with certain behavioral states. The proper integration of brain oscillations provides for the phenomenon of binding and central coherence. Brain augmentation may foster the normalization of brain oscillations in nervous system disorders. These techniques hold the promise of being applied remotely (under the supervision of medical personnel), thus overcoming the obstacle of travel in order to obtain healthcare. At present, traditional thinking would argue the possibility of synergism among different modalities of brain augmentation as a way of increasing their overall effectiveness and improving therapeutic selectivity. Thinking outside of the box would also provide for the implementation of brain-to-brain interfaces where techniques, proper to artificial intelligence, could allow us to surpass the limits of natural selection or enable communications between several individual brains sharing memories, or even a global brain capable of self-organization. Not all brains are created equal. Brain stimulation studies suggest large individual variability in response that may affect overall recovery/treatment, or modify desired effects of a given intervention. The subject’s age, gender, hormonal levels may affect an individual’s cortical excitability. In addition, this volume discusses the role of social interactions in the operations of augmenting technologies. Finally, augmenting methods could be applied to modulate consciousness, even though its neural mechanisms are poorly understood. Finally, this volume should be taken as a debate on social, moral and ethical issues on neurotechnologies. Brain enhancement may transform the individual into someone or something else. These techniques bypass the usual routes of accommodation to environmental exigencies that exalted our personal fortitude: learning, exercising, and diet. This will allow humans to preselect desired characteristics and realize consequent rewards without having to overcome adversity through more laborious means. The concern is that humans may be playing God, and the possibility of an expanding gap in social equity where brain enhancements may be selectively available to the wealthier individuals. These issues are discussed by a number of articles in this volume. Also discussed are the relationship between the diminishment and enhancement following the application of brain-augmenting technologies, the problem of “mind control” with BMI technologies, free will the duty to use cognitive enhancers in high-responsibility professions, determining the population of people in need of brain enhancement, informed public policy, cognitive biases, and the hype caused by the development of brain- augmenting approaches.

Using neurophysiological signals that reflect cognitive or affective state

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889196135 Year: Pages: 314 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-613-5 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Neurology
Added to DOAB on : 2016-08-16 10:34:25
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What can we learn from spontaneously occurring brain and other physiological signals about an individual’s cognitive and affective state and how can we make use of this information? One line of research that is actively involved with this question is Passive Brain-Computer-Interfaces (BCI). To date most BCIs are aimed at assisting patients for whom brain signals could form an alternative output channel as opposed to more common human output channels, like speech and moving the hands. However, brain signals (possibly in combination with other physiological signals) also form an output channel above and beyond the more usual ones: they can potentially provide continuous, online information about an individual’s cognitive and affective state without the need of conscious or effortful communication. The provided information could be used in a number of ways. Examples include monitoring cognitive workload through EEG and skin conductance for adaptive automation or using ERPs in response to errors to correct for a behavioral response. While Passive BCIs make use of online (neuro)physiological responses and close the interaction cycle between a user and a computer system, (neuro)physiological responses can also be used in an offline fashion. Examples of this include detecting amygdala responses for neuromarketing, and measuring EEG and pupil dilation as indicators of mental effort for optimizing information systems. The described field of applied (neuro)physiology can strongly benefit from high quality scientific studies that control for confounding factors and use proper comparison conditions. Another area of relevance is ethics, ranging from dubious product claims, acceptance of the technology by the general public, privacy of users, to possible effects that these kinds of applications may have on society as a whole. In this Research Topic we aimed to publish studies of the highest scientific quality that are directed towards applications that utilize spontaneously, effortlessly generated neurophysiological signals (brain and/or other physiological signals) reflecting cognitive or affective state. We especially welcomed studies that describe specific real world applications demonstrating a significant benefit compared to standard applications. We also invited original, new kinds of (proposed) applications in this area as well as comprehensive review articles that point out what is and what is not possible (according to scientific standards) in this field. Finally, we welcomed manuscripts on the ethical issues that are involved. Connected to the Research Topic was a workshop (held on June 6, during the Fifth International Brain-Computer Interface Meeting, June 3-7, 2013, Asilomar, California) that brought together a diverse group of people who were working in this field. We discussed the state of the art and formulated major challenges, as reflected in the first paper of the Research Topic.

Trends in Neuroergonomics: A Comprehensive Overview

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889452033 Year: Pages: 402 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-203-3 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2017-10-13 14:57:01
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This Research Topic is dedicated to Raja Parasuraman who unexpectedly passed on March 22nd 2015. Raja Parasuraman’s pioneering work led the emergence of Neuroergonomics as a new scientific field. He combined his research interests in the field of Neuroergonomics which he defined as the study of the human brain in relation to performance at work and everyday settings. Raja Parasuraman was a pioneer, a truly exceptional researcher and an extraordinary person. He made significant contributions to a number of disciplines, from human factors to cognitive neuroscience. His advice to young researchers was to be passionate in order to develop theory and knowledge that can guide the design of technologies and environments for people. His legacy, the field of Neuroergonomics, will live on in countless faculties and students whom he advised and inspired with unmatched humility throughout the whole of his distinguished career. Raja Parasuraman was an impressive human being, a very kind person, and an absolutely inspiring individual who will be remembered by everyone who had the chance to meet him. About this Research Topic Since the advent of neuroergonomics, significant progress has been made with respect to methodology and tools for the investigation of the brain and behavior at work. This is especially the case for neuroscientific methods where the availability of ambulatory hardware, wearable sensors and advanced data analyses allow for imaging of brain dynamics in humans in applied environments. Methods such as: electroencephalography (EEG), functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), and stimulation approaches like transcranial direct-currrent stimulation (tDCS) have made significant progress in both recording and altering brain activity while allowing full body movements outside laboratory environments. For neuroergonomics, the application of brain imaging in real-world scenarios is highly relevant. Traditionally, brain imaging experiments in human factors research tend to avoid active behavior for fear of artifacts and a contaminated data set that would provide limited insight into brain dynamics in real working environments. To overcome these problems new analyses approaches have to be developed that identify artifacts resulting from hostile recording environments and movement-related non-brain activity stemming from eye-, head, and full-body movements. The application of methodology from the field of Brain-Computer Interfacing (BCI) for neuroergonomics is one approach that has significant potential to enhance ambulatory monitoring and applied testing. Passive BCIs allow for assessing aspects of the user state online, such that systems can automatically adapt to their user. This neuroadaptive technology could lead to highly efficient working environments, to auto-adaptive experimental paradigms and to a continuous tracking of cognitive and affective aspects of the user state. Hence, deployment of portable neuroimaging technologies to real time settings could help assess cognitive and motivational states of personnel assigned to perform critical tasks. This Research Topic gathers submissions that cover new approaches in neuroergonomics. Different article type cover advanced neuroscience methods and neuroergonomics techniques as well as analysis approaches to investigate brain dynamics in working environments. The selection of papers provides insights into new neuroergonomic research approaches that demonstrate significant advances in brain imaging technologies that become more and more mobile, Moreover, a strong trend for new analyses approaches and paradigms investigating real work settings can be seen. Together, this unique collection of latest research papers provides a comprehensive overview on the latest developments in neuroergonomics.

Immune Interactions during the Reproductive Cycle

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889195640 Year: Pages: 158 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-564-0 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Allergy and Immunology --- Medicine (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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Mammalian pregnancy represents a unique immunological riddle in that the mother does not reject her allogeneic fetus. In part this is largely due to a general sequestration or diminution of T cell activity, and an increased involvement of the innate immune system. The field of immunology is concerned primarily with how innate and adaptive mechanisms collaborate to protect vertebrates from infection. Although many cellular and molecular actors have evidently important roles, antibodies and lymphocytes are considered to be the principal players. Yet despite their importance, it would be definitely simplistic to conclude that they are solely essential for immunity overall. A major distinction between adaptive and innate immunity is the spontaneity of the innate immune response, which utilizes an already pre-existing but limited repertoire of responding modules. The slower onset of adaptive immunity compensates by its ability to recognize a much broader repertory of foreign substances, and also by its power to constantly improve during a response, whereas innate immunity remains relatively unaffected. The interactions between the reproductive system and the immune system are of particular interest, since the reproductive system is unique in that its primary role is to assure the continuity of the species, while the immune system provides internal protection and thus facilitates continued health and survival. The modus operandi of these two morphologically diffuse systems involves widely distributed chemical signals in response to environmental input, and both systems must interact for the normal functioning of each. Furthermore, dysregulation of normal physiological interactions between the reproductive and immune systems can lead to severe pregnancy-related disorders or complications. On the other hand, by ameliorating auto-inflammatory conditions such as MS and RA, pregnancy may provide a unique insight into novel immune modulatory strategies. The scientific focus on reproductive–immune research has historically provided substantial insight into the interface between these two physiological systems. A translational research approach would involve a tight interaction between diverse scientific and clinical disciplines including immunology, obstetrics, haematology, haemostasis and endocrinology. With so much recent progress in the field, we believe that it is valuable and well-timed to review the broad variety of the relevant physiologic and pathologic aspects – from menstruation to fertilization and implantation, and from placentation and pregnancy per se to the post partum condition - in which the immune system takes part. We are looking forward to a wide and vivid discussion of these and related issues, and we sincerely expect that our readers profoundly benefit from new exciting insights and fruitful collaborations.

Mind over brain, brain over mind: cognitive causes and consequences of controlling brain activity

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889194889 Year: Pages: 134 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-488-9 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2016-04-07 11:22:02
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This Research Topic combines articles aiming to gain a better understanding on different factors that determine whether people are successful or not in controlling computerized devices with brain signals. Since decades, technological advancements in neuroscience allow the interpretation of brain signals and their translation into control messages (Brain-computer interface (BCI)). Moreover, the control of brain signals can be used to induce changes in cognition and behavior (Neurofeedback (NF)). However, the break-through of this technology for the broad population in real-world applications has not yet arrived. Various factors have been related to the individual success in controlling computerized devices with brain signals, but to date, no general theoretical framework is available. In this Research Topic, aspects of the training protocol such as instructions, task and feedback as well as cognitive and psychological traits such as motivation, mood, locus of control and empathy are investigated as determinants of BCI or NF performance. Moreover, the mechanisms and networks involved in gaining and maintaining control over brain activity as well as its prediction are addressed. Finally, as the ultimate goal of this research is to use BCI and NF for communication or control and therapy, respectively, novel applications for individuals with disabilities or disorders are discussed.

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