For individuals with paralysis in the upper limbs, an improvement in neuromuscular function directly translates into significant gains in terms of quality of life. For example, regaining the ability to hold a fork could enable individuals to feed themselves independently, likewise improved motor skills may provide the individual with the ability to manage a keyboard or tablet.
GTX is developing the transcutaneous LIFT device for non-invasive electrical spinal cord stimulation (NESS) therapy to enable restoration of motor control and function in the upper limbs after SCI. The LIFT device for NESS is designed to re-establish communication between spared neural networks and the brain by means of a stimulation approach through the skin that uses patented waveforms.
Wearable gel electrodes are attached to the skin on the back of the patient’s neck (cervical spine) and controlled via a hand-held stimulator programmed with a tablet. The LIFT device has adjustable settings for current, frequency, waveform and duration of stimulation, and is designed for use in a rehabilitation clinic or at home.
The scientific basis for development of the LIFT System is predicated upon research studies performed on animal and human subjects with SCI demonstrating residual (spared) sensory and motor pathways were critical in mediating the voluntary movements that are possible when NESS therapy is paired with task-based training by the individual.
A pivotal study is due to launch in Q4 2020. LIFT will be made available exclusively in the USA after formal clearance from FDA.