Transfer of information by BMI

Neuroscience. 2013;255:134-46. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2013.10.003. Epub 2013 Oct 10.


Brain machine interfaces (BMI) have become important in systems neuroscience with the goal to restore motor function in paralyzed patients. We assess the current ability of BMI devices to move objects. The topics discussed include: (1) the bits of information generated by a BMI signal, (2) the limitations of including more neurons for generating a BMI signal, (3) the superiority of a BMI signal using single cells versus electroencephalography, (4) plasticity and BMI, (5) the selection of a neural code for generating BMI, (6) the suppression of body movements during BMI, and (7) the role of vision in BMI. We conclude that further research on understanding how the brain generates movement is necessary before BMI can become a reasonable option for paralyzed patients.

Keywords: BMI; EEG; bit rate; brain machine interfaces; electroencephalography; monkeys; quadriplegics; skeleto-motor; vision.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / physiology
  • Brain-Computer Interfaces*
  • Humans
  • Movement / physiology
  • Neurons / physiology