Creating and sharing knowledge for telecommunications


Main Objective:
The INNOVATE objective is to develop an multifunctional implantable organic electronic transducer to record and stimulate signals from neuronal cells. These devices should work as a tool to decode communication signals used by cells to regulate biological functions. These devices are also aimed to repair faulty signal pathways acting as therapetical biomedical devices.
The transducer uses the basic principles of capacitive coupling of a field effect transistor device, but it is fabricated with innovative biocompatible and flexible electronic materials, providing low impedance, very low noise and a high charge collection efficiency. This allows recording of ultra-weak signals representing a significant advance with respect to currently available technology.
The transducer will be optimized and tested with an important class of neuronal cells known as Glia cells. These cells establish the communication protocol between neurons. Improper signalling by these cells is responsible for a number of neuronal diseases such as Parkinson and Alzimer. Glia cells regulate the neuronal communication by synchronizing their activity and generating calcium waves. These waves are cooperative phenomena and can be measured electrically. Therefore, the devices will be designed to monitor a population of cells. However the knowledge acquired can easily be transposed for single cell analysis by scaling down the transducer dimensions.
Reference: PTDC/EEI-AUT/5442/2014
Funding: FCT
Start Date: 01-07-2016
End Date: 01-06-2019
Team: Henrique Leonel Gomes, Maria do Carmo Raposo de Medeiros, Luís Joaquim Alcácer, Jorge Manuel Ferreira Morgado, Ana Luísa Garcias Mestre
Groups: Organic Electronics – Lx, Optical Communication Systems and Networking – Co
Partners: Universidade de Aveiro, Universidade do Algarve
Local Coordinator: Henrique Leonel Gomes

Associated Publications