Instituto Madrileño de Estudios Avanzados - IMDEA Nanociencia

edificio nano 2

IMDEA Nanociencia, the Institute of Advanced Studies in Nanoscience, is a private non profit foundation created by initiative of the Regional Government of the Community of Madrid in order to shorten the distance between the research and society in the Madrid region and provide new capacity for research, technological development and innovation in the field of nanoscience, nanotechnology and molecular design.

Neural Interfaces laboratory at IMDEA Nanociencia

ByAxon group IMDEA

At the Neural Interfaces lab we fabricate and characterize nanostructured devices to be used as neural interfaces of enhanced performance respect to classic neural electrodes. We base our research in two parallel approaches:

Electrical electrodes covered by vertical metallic nanowires:

Our aim is to fabricate improved neural electrodes to be used for electrical stimulation of the neural activity. By giving nanostructure to the electrodes, we aim to achieve enhance biocompatibility and efficiency.

- Using the technique of template-assisted electrochemical deposition, we explore different materials to prepare conductive electrodes covered by vertical metallic nanowires. 

- We fabricate our own aluminium oxide nanotemplates by anodization, in order to explore different geometries, densities and distributions of the nanowires in the array.

- Using IMDEA-Nanociencia clean room facilities, we pattern electrode heads by optical lithography. In this way, we prepare ready-to-use electrodes whose biocompatibility and performance can then be tested by our colleagues at SISSA, SESCAM and mfd-Diagnostics.

Sensors of neural activity base on magnetoresistive materials:

We aim to demonstrate that magnetoresistive materials can be used to sense the neural activity without the use of cryogenic liquids (as SQUIDs detectors need).

- Starting from the LSMO thin films grown over vicinal substrates by our colleagues at CNRS-GREYC, we pattern devices to be used as neural sensors which do not need to be in intimate contact with the neural tissue, and work at room temperature.

- In order to explore the in-bench performance of the sensors, we measure two main figures of merit of the devices: the sensitivity, meaning how much the resistance of the sensor varies per unit of applied magnetic field, and its accuracy by performing power spectral density measurements.

-We have a portable home-made magnetically isolated chamber for a first characterization of the sensors. In addition, we explore Wheatstone-bridge configurations together with strategic shielding layers, aiming to comply with the 5 gauss limit for safe operation, as pacemakers do.

NanowiresIMDEA Metallic nanowires.

Clean room Clean room facilities.

Anodized membrane2 Porous template.

fotos 253x253 0000 rodolfo miranda Prof. Rodolfo MirandaDirector of IMDEA Nanociencia. Principal investigator and project coordinator.


m teresa gonzalez Prof. Teresa González Project coordinator, nanostructured electrode fabrication, sensor implementation, bypass assembly.

julio camarero Prof. Julio CamareroAssociate research professor. Sensor implementation, bypass assembly.

isabel rodriguez Prof. Isabel Rodríguez Research professor. Growth of polymeric nanostructured electrodes by nanoimprinting.

lucas peürez Dr. Lucas PérezAssociate researcher. Nanostructured electrode fabrication by electrochemical deposition, bypass assembly.

paolo perna Dr. Paolo Perna Sensor implementation and testing, bypass assembly.

Ruben Guerrero Dr. Rubén Guerrero Post-doctoral researcher. Sensor implementation and testing, bypass assembly.

jaime hernandez Dr. Jaime Hernández Post-doctoral researcher. Growth of polymeric nanostructured electrodes by nanoimprinting.

beatriz rodilla Beatriz L. Rodilla PhD student. Nanostructured electrode fabrication.

Vicente Vicente Muñoz PhD student. 

sergio de las heras Sergio de las Heras Technician

andres valera Andrés Valera Technician.

angel ayuso Dr. Ángel Ayuso Associate researcher. Optimization of neural interfaces.

m jesus villa Dr. M. Jesús Villa Human resources and project management.

fotos 253x253 0007 mark davies Dr. Mark Davies Project management, dissemination and exploitation.

elena alonso Dr. Elena Alonso Dissemination and communication.