2021 MRS Spring Meeting

Symposium Sessions


  • Broader Impact (BI)
  • Characterization and Modeling (CT)
  • Electronics and Optics (EL)
  • Energy and Sustainability (EN)
  • Nanoscale and Quantum Materials (NM)
  • Soft Materials and Biomaterials (SM)
  • Structural Materials (ST)

Symposium SM03—Advanced Neural Materials and Devices

There is growing interest in the interface of biomaterials and nervous system from professionals in human health, biomedical engineering, and neuroscience. Neural prostheses are devices that are implanted into the nervous system for bidirectional communication (recording from and stimulation of neural tissue) to treat or assist people with disabilities of neural function. There have been several major advances in neural interface technologies during past couple of years, however, the engineering of stable and reliable electronic-neural tissue interface is essential for long-term functionality of these implants. The quality of signal transduction between the electrodes and neurons depends on physical and chemical properties of the electrode-tissue interface that ultimately relies on the specifics of the material design that enables a long-term stable and functional interface. The challenge for materials science is to design and develop multifunctional biomaterials to safely integrate with neural tissue with minimal biological response. Substrates and electrode materials must meet strict electrochemical requirements such as long-term stability, biocompatibility, and resistance to corrosion in physiological environment. Furthermore, the implant materials should match the mechanical properties of surrounding tissue to prevent injury due to micromotion and allow for adequate exchange of nutrients and waste so that the surrounding tissue remain healthy. This symposium will focus on the latest advances in biomaterials to control/engineer neuron-electronic interfaces to produce stable and functional implants with greater longevity than what is possible today. Session topics will spotlight the latest efforts to achieve the most effective and safest strategies to communicate with neurons.

Topics will include:

  • Novel natural materials, biocompatible materials, and small molecules for neural interfaces (substrates, conductive materials, etc.)
  • Neuron guidance
  • Immobilization & patterning of axon guidance molecules
  • Drug delivery to the brain
  • Surface modification of neural electrodes
  • Biocompatibility of neural electrodes with surrounding tissues
  • Microelectrode design and biocompatibility
  • Electroactive materials (inorganic/organic)
  • Biostability of the neuroprosthetic devices
  • Signal transduction at electrode tissue interface
  • Limb prostheses, artificial retina, cochlear implants, nerve conduits
  • Neurochemical sensing
  • Brain-on-a-chip devices
  • Organic bioelectronics

Invited Speakers:

  • Magnus Berggren (Linköping University, Sweden)
  • Taek Dong Chung (Seoul National University, Republic of Korea)
  • Bianxiao Cui (Stanford University, USA)
  • Tracy Cui (University of Pittsburgh, USA)
  • Andreas Hierlemann (ETH Zürich, Switzerland)
  • Eric Hudak (National Institute of Health, USA)
  • Dae-Hyeong Kim (Seoul National University, Republic of Korea)
  • George Malliaras (University of Cambridge, United Kingdom)
  • David Martin (University of Delaware, USA)
  • Nick Melosh (Stanford University, USA)
  • Laura Poole-Warren (University of New South Wales, Australia)
  • John Rogers (Northwestern University, USA)
  • Sameer Sheth (Baylor College of Medicine, USA)
  • Klaus Tybrandt (Linköping University, Sweden)
  • Chong Xie (Rice University, USA)

Symposium Organizers

Mohammad Reza Abidian
University of Houston

Dion Khodagholy
Columbia University
Electrical Engineering

Daniel Simon
Linköping University
Organic Bioelectronics

Flavia Vitale
University of Pennsylvania

Publishing Alliance

MRS publishes with Springer Nature


Symposium Support