Published on 29 Aug 2022

Nature Electronics Paper - Prof Chen Xiaodong

We would like to extend our warmest congratulations to Professor Chen Xiaodong and his team on their publication entitled "A chemically mediated artificial neuron" in Nature Electronics.


Brain–machine interfaces typically rely on electrophysiological signals to interpret and transmit neurological information. In biological systems, however, neurotransmitters are chemical-based interneuron messengers. This mismatch can potentially lead to incorrect interpretation of the transmitted neuron information. Here we report a chemically mediated artificial neuron that can receive and release the neurotransmitter dopamine. The artificial neuron detects dopamine using a carbon-based electrochemical sensor and then processes the sensory signals using a memristor with synaptic plasticity, before stimulating dopamine release through a heat-responsive hydrogel. The system responds to dopamine exocytosis from rat pheochromocytoma cells and also releases dopamine to activate pheochromocytoma cells, forming a chemical communication loop similar to interneurons. To illustrate the potential of this approach, we show that the artificial neuron can trigger the controllable movement of a mouse leg and robotic hand.

The article can be found via this link: 

About the journal
Nature Electronics publishes both fundamental and applied research across all areas of electronics, from the study of novel phenomena and devices, to the design, construction and wider application of electronic circuits. It also covers commercial and industrial aspects of electronics research. The journal focuses on the development of technology and on understanding the impact such developments could have on society. Nature Electronics incorporates the research of scientists, engineers and industry, and provides comment, review and analysis of the key issues shaping the field and the key technologies reshaping society.

Our heartiest congratulations to Professor Chen and the team on their excellent achievement!