Research

1) Restoration of Vision

Loss of photoreceptors is one of the major cause for blindness. Artificial photoreceptors might help in the development of improved sub-retinal prosthetics that do not require external power sources.

Photoreceptors made from titanium dioxide nanowires coated with gold nanoparticles could restore vision in blind mice. The devices, which respond to green, blue and near ultraviolet light when interfaced with the retina of the animals, might help in the development of improved ocular prosthetics that do not require external power sources.

2) Vision-based chameleon using wearable electronics

Displaying textile is flexible, stretchable, three-dimensionally twistable, conformable to arbitrarily curved skins, breathable, and can dynamically display a series of desired patterns, making it useful for bioinspired electronics, soft robotics, and electroluminescent skins. We demonstrated that these displaying textiles can form a real-time interface with the visual cortex of a mouse brain to reflect the color in the environment.

3) Rehabilitation after C7 transfer surgery to treat stroke

We developed a shape-memory multisite peripheral nerve stimulation device to induce selective limb movement. Our work opens up the possibility for multisite nerve bundle stimulation to induce highly-selective activations of limb muscles, which could inspire further applications in neurosurgery and neuroscience research.

4) Development of visual circuits

The dorsal Lateral Geniculate Nucleus (dLGN) is the primary image-forming target of the retina and shares a reciprocal connection with primary visual cortex (V1). We showed that the wiring of visual circuit from the retina to the dLGN and V1 thereafter is coordinated at a surprisingly early stage of circuit development.

5) Visual and Motor deficits in grown-up mice with congenital zika virus infection

We allow congenitally ZIKV-infected mice to grow into puberty. These mice exhibited motor incoordination and visual dysfunctions, which can be accounted by anatomical defects in the retina and cerebellar cortex. Our study provided behavioral evaluation for the prognosis of congenital ZIKV infection and provides a platform for screening and evaluation of drugs candidates and treatment aiming at improving regeneration of infected neurons to prevent sequelae caused by ZIKV infection of fetus.