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Connecting to the Networks of the Human Brain


Start Date
End Date
Total Funding
€ 9 981 794
Funding Programme
European Countries Involved
ConnectToBrain will introduce whole-brain multi-locus transcranial magnetic stimulation (mTMS), in which the brain-stimulating electric-field location, direction, magnitude and timing are controlled electronically based on real-time high-density electroencephalography (hdEEG) information of activity and connectivity in brain networks. The final mTMS apparatus will consist of 50 coils. Superpositions of electric fields produced by the different overlapping coils allow spatiotemporally millimeter- and millisecond-precise stimulus sequences to arbitrary cortical sites without physical movements of the coil set. Spatial targeting of mTMS will be further improved by measuring individual brain conductivity distributions with ultra-low-field MRI. The proposed hdEEG methodology uses a brain–computer interface (BCI) and a computer–brain interface (CBI) in a closed, algorithmically-controlled loop. BCI receives real-time information about brain activity and connectivity from hdEEG, while CBI adapts mTMS to drive brain activity and connectivity into desired directions. ConnectToBrain will allow unprecedented tracking of dynamic changes and reorganization of brain networks in real-time, and network-targeted closed-loop stimulation. This radically novel technology will cause a paradigm shift from current open-loop practice that is only moderately effective in therapy. We will apply ConnectToBrain to reach new levels of efficacy of therapeutic applications. Patients after stroke and with Alzheimer’s disease will be tested and treated as models of network disorders.
Our high-risk, high-gain endeavor will reach the ambitious goals only through the Synergy of the 3 PIs, world leaders in their complementary areas of expertise (instrumentation, algorithms, translation). If the project succeeds, we expect the value of societal, health and industrial benefits in Europe to exceed €1 billion annually, not to mention the immense value of alleviating human suffering from brain disorders.
Project partners
Universita Degli Studi Gabriele D'Annunzio Di Chieti-Pescara
Eberhard Karls Universitaet Tuebingen
Aalto Korkeakoulusaatio Sr
Alzheimer Europe's database on research projects was developed as part of the 2020 Work Plan which received funding under an operating grant from the European Union’s Health Programme (2014–2020).