BME100 f2017:Group15 W0800 L1

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Name: Megan Koehler
Name: Cade Montplaisir
Name: John Navas
Name: Samuel Ramirez
Name: Julia Raub


Health Care Issue

We plan on developing a less intrusive device for deep brain stimulation. We are specifically exploring the use of high frequency ultrasounds as a way for deep brain stimulation. In doing so, we provide a less intrusive treatment that can be used as out-patient treatment rather than an expensive surgery that comes along with a long hospital stay. Deep brain stimulation is used to treat a number of neurological conditions, such as: Essential Tremor, Parkinson's Disease, Dystonia, Epilepsy, Tourette Syndrome, Chronic Pain, Obsessive Compulsion Disorder¹. A cheaper and less intrusive method for deep brain stimulation would allow for patients with the above conditions to get the treatment they need quickly, as well as inexpensively. With this new method and device, deep brain stimulation would be much more accessible to the public and more available to those who require but cannot necessarily afford to receive deep brain stimulation.

Customer Validation

  • John F. Kerrigan, MD (Phoenix Children's Hospital)
  • Joseph I. Sirven, MD (Mayo Clinic, AZ)
  • David Treiman, MD (Barrow’s Neurological Center, Phoenix, AZ)
  • David Scott Saperstein, MD (Phoenix Neurological Associates)
  • National Parkinson's Foundation
  • The Michael J. Fox Foundation
  • Muhammad Ali Parkinson’s Center
  • John’s Hopkins Deep Brain Stimulation Center
  • Anwar Ahmed, MD (Cleveland Clinic)
  • Phillip L. Pearl, MD (Boston Children’s Hospital)
  • Hendin Barry A MD (Phoenix Neurological Associates)
  • American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology
  • Dr. George Wang, MD (Neurology and Sleep Medicine, Mesa, AZ)
  • Jeffrey L. Shy, MD (Neurological Physicians of AZ)
  • Ethan Goldberg, MD, PhD (Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia)
  • American Neurological Association
  • Mejia Gonzalez, Nicte I., MD (Massachusetts General Hospital)
  • Sheng-Han Kuo, MD (New York-Presbyterian Hospital)
  • World Federation of Neurology
  • Michael H. Slayton (University of Arizona)


Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS)

  • Ability to stimulate specific deep brain areas through the use of implanted electrodes²
  • Has a pacemaker to induce stimulation when required⁵


  • Invasive² (financial)
  • Requires implementation of electrodes²
  • Regular monitoring of device/periodic changing of batteries⁵
  • If device malfunctions, another surgery is required⁵

Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS)

  • Non-invasive²
  • Achieves neural stimulation by transmitting electrical current to specific region of the brain²


  • Poor spatial resolution² (technological)

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)

  • Non-invasive²
  • Achieves neural stimulation  utilizes magnetic energy to pass through skull to target region of the brain²


  • Poor spatial resolution² (technological)

Our device would be more marketable than what is on the market because it would be non-invasive.  Being able to stimulate the brain in specific regions without actually having to have a surgery or an extended stay at a hospital would be very appealing for most patients. One other major thing to note is that this method would allow us to target specific areas of the brain instead of a wide area. This improved specificity would allow us to limit the adverse effects that may be caused by wide ranging stimulation of the brain. The major thing we want to stress is the ability of this device to be non-invasive and out of the hospital setting and into the outpatient setting.

IP Position

Patent #  7,758,524  Title: Method and system for ultra-high frequency ultrasound treatment Non-invasive ultra high frequency ultrasound, Superficial and/or subcutaneous regions, 20MHz to 500Mhz or more may be utilized.

Fundability Worksheet Scores

Customer Validation

      2-there are many companies that have already shown an interest in developing this procedure; we do not know exactly how many have already funded the project


      2-many different universities and hospitals are currently working on this and improvements are sought after and difficult to come by

IP Position,

      1-the patents that already exist will make it difficult to make improvements; the only freedom is with amplitude of ultrasound waves


1)Mayo Clinic, Deep Brain Stimulation,
2)Nature Search Journal, Improved Anatomical Specificity of Non-invasive Neuro-stimulation by High Frequency (5 MHz) Ultrasound,
3)Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, High frequency deep brain stimulation attenuates subthalamic and cortical rhythms in Parkinson's disease,
4)USPTO Patent Full-Text and Image Database, (patents)
5)Very Well, Pros and Cons of Deep Brain Stimulation in Parkinson's Therapy,
6)USPTO Patent Full-Text and Image Database,