The vision of iONE FP7 project is to develop and test for the first time flexible organic electronics for the development and testing of Active Multifunctional Implantable Devices (AMIDs) leading to treatment of Spinal Cord Injury (SCI).
The project will lead to device(s):
(a) having long-term stability associated to high biocompatibility and safety,
(b) having reduced risk of a host versus graft immune response,
(c) mimicking the local microenvironment for stem/precursor cell recruitment and differentiation,
(d) monitoring locally the functionality of the regenerated nerve cells to intervene with loco-regional therapies,
(e) performing local stimulation with tunable electric fields,
(f) delivering locally growth factors, neurotransmitters, and drugs.
The use of flexible organic electronics devices (ultra-thin film organic field effect transistor (FET), organic electro-chemical transistor, nanoparticle organic memory FET) will advance the state-of-the-art of implantable devices for SCI from passive to active layouts that will promote nerve regeneration by a combination of local stimuli delivered on demand, will sense inflammation, and will control the immune-inflammatory response.
The biomedical impact of the project will be demonstrated in vitro and in vivo. In vitro, the neural therapeutic plasticity induced by the iONE device will be evaluated on stem cells, which will be differentiated to neural progenitor cells, and then to neural cells. In vivo, the study of neural plasticity will be transferred to endogenous stem cells by implanting the iONE device into a contusion SCI animal model.
iONE will acquire the knowledge and the technology required to regenerate the nerve in the niche of the injury.