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Medtronic-backed study implants 1st Alzheimer's patient with brain "pacemaker"

Tue, 08/07/2012 - 4:28pm
Mass Device

Researchers in the U.S. and Canada treat the 1st patients in a Medtronic-backed study of deep brain stimulation as treatment for Alzheimer's disease.

Deep brain stimulation image

Researchers in the U.S. and Canada launched a clinical trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of deep-brain stimulation in treatment of mild Alzheimer's disease.

The study will enroll 20 people aged 55-80 with Medtronic's (NYSE:MDT) deep brain stimulation technology, surgically implanted devices that are similar to a cardiac pacemaker and that deliver electrical pulses to targeted areas of the brain.

The trial, conducted by Functional Neuromodulation Ltd., will use Medtronic's DBS therapy to target a specific area considered a "major inflow and output pathway in the brain's memory circuit," according to a press release.

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