Magneto-electric nano-particles for non-invasive brain stimulation

PLoS One. 2012;7(9):e44040. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0044040. Epub 2012 Sep 5.


This paper for the first time discusses a computational study of using magneto-electric (ME) nanoparticles to artificially stimulate the neural activity deep in the brain. The new technology provides a unique way to couple electric signals in the neural network to the magnetic dipoles in the nanoparticles with the purpose to enable a non-invasive approach. Simulations of the effect of ME nanoparticles for non-invasively stimulating the brain of a patient with Parkinson's Disease to bring the pulsed sequences of the electric field to the levels comparable to those of healthy people show that the optimized values for the concentration of the 20-nm nanoparticles (with the magneto-electric (ME) coefficient of 100 V cm(-1) Oe(-1) in the aqueous solution) is 3 × 10(6) particles/cc, and the frequency of the externally applied 300-Oe magnetic field is 80 Hz.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Brain / physiology
  • Computer Simulation
  • Deep Brain Stimulation / methods*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Fields
  • Magnetics*
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry
  • Nanoparticles / therapeutic use*
  • Nanotechnology / methods
  • Nerve Net / physiology
  • Parkinson Disease / therapy