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Research Papers

A Distinctive Platform System to Study the Effects of a Vestibular Prosthesis on Nonhuman Primate Postural Control

[+] Author and Article Information
Lara A. Thompson

Mem. ASME
Biomedical Engineering Program,
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
School of Engineering and Applied Sciences,
University of the District of Columbia,
4200 Connecticut Avenue NW,
Washington, DC 20008;
Harvard-MIT Division of
Health Sciences and Technology,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
77 Massachusetts Avenue,
Cambridge, MA 02138
e-mail: lthomps@alum.mit.edu

Csilla Haburcakova

Jenks Vestibular Physiology Laboratory,
Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary,
Boston, MA 02139
e-mail: Csilla_Haburcakova@meei.harvard.edu

Richard F. Lewis

Departments of Otology &
Laryngology and Neurology,
Harvard Medical School,
Boston, MA 02139;
Jenks Vestibular Physiology Laboratory,
Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary,
Boston, MA 02139
e-mail: richard_lewis@meei.harvard.edu

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received September 13, 2017; final manuscript received December 30, 2017; published online February 28, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Douglas Dow.

ASME J of Medical Diagnostics 1(2), 021004 (Feb 28, 2018) (5 pages) Paper No: JESMDT-17-2038; doi: 10.1115/1.4039140 History: Received September 13, 2017; Revised December 30, 2017

The purpose of this paper is to describe novel experiments and methodologies utilizing a distinctive balance platform system to investigate postural responses for moderate to severe vestibular loss and invasive vestibular prosthesis-assisted nonhuman primates (rhesus monkeys). For several millions of vestibular loss sufferers in the U.S., daily living is severely affected in that common everyday tasks, such as getting out of bed at night, maintaining balance on a moving bus, or walking on an uneven surface, may cause a loss of stability leading to falls and injury. Aside from loss of balance, blurred vision and vertigo (perceived spinning sensation) are also debilitating in vestibular-impaired individuals. Although the need for vestibular rehabilitative solutions is apparent, postural responses for a broad range of peripheral vestibular function, and for various stationary and moving support conditions, have not been systematically investigated. For the investigation of implants and prostheses that are being developed toward implementation in humans, nonhuman primates are a key component. The measurement system used in this research was unique. Our platform system facilitated the study of rhesus monkey posture for stationary support surface conditions (quiet stance and head turns) and for dynamic support surface conditions (pseudorandom roll tilts of the support surface). Further, the platform system was used to systematically study postural responses that will serve as baseline measures for future vestibular-focused human and nonhuman primate posture studies.

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Topics: Prostheses
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References

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Sensory states for rhesus monkey balance experiments; experimental conditions using the balance platform and actual balance platform are also shown

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Fig. 2

Schematic of quiet stance test setup: (a) top view and (b) side view

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Fig. 3

Schematic of head turn experiment: (a) animal fixates on the target straight ahead and (b) offset target is illuminated and animal turns it head to fixate on the target

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Fig. 4

(a) Schematic of pseudorandom roll-tilt test setup and (b) PRTS balance platform input (left), animal (middle), and trunk roll output (right)

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