Takashi D. Y. Kozai
Affilliation: University of Pittsburgh
Takashi Kozai is an Assistant Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh. He received the B.A. (magna cum laude) degree with distinction in molecular, cellular, and developmental biology, and another B.A. degree with distinction in biochemistry from the University of Colorado, Boulder, CO, USA, both in 2005, and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in biomedical engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA, in 2007 and 2011, respectively. From 2007 to 2009, he cofounded Fontis Biotechnologies, a medical device startup for transdermal macromolecular drug delivery. From 2011 to 2013, he was a Postdoctoral Associate Researcher with the Department of Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA, where in 2013-2015, he was appointed as a Research Assistant Professor before starting his own lab. His primary research interests include the elucidating molecular and cellular pathways of brain injuries and diseases, and engineering implantable medical devices, biomaterials, and neurotechnologies.
Talk Title: Biological Science Driven Future of Neural Interface Engineering
Intracortical electrode arrays that can record extracellular action potentials from small, targeted groups of neurons are critical for basic neuroscience research and emerging clinical applications. In general, these electrode devices suffer from reliability and variability issues that impact their performance on the order of months to years. The failure mechanisms of these electrodes are understood to be a complex combination of the biological reactive tissue response and material failure of the device over time. Emerging transgenic tools combined with in vivo multi-photon microscopy, functionally evoked electrophysiology, post-mortem multi-channel immunohistochemistry, impedance spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, device design, and emerging biomaterial tools point to a detailed roadmap for designing next-generation devices. These include optimizing the adhesion properties of various probe components, probe geometry, volumetric density, anti-biofouling properties, chemical stability, flexibility, softness, mechanical strength, and bioactivity. This talk will discuss the biological evidence that highlight the importance of these design components as well as the challenges of balancing these various properties while maintaining the necessary conductivity and dielectric insulation for proper functionality. Innovation of future materials and devices need to consider the titration of all of these design components, instead of optimizing just one part.