A consortium of leading universities in the US is developing new technology to help people avoid the memory problems that are associated with epilepsy.The group, which has recently been joined by the University of Texas (UT) Southwestern Medical Center, is part of a project to produce a functional neural monitoring-stimulation implant by the end of 2018.Working with the University of Pennsylvania, Thomas Jefferson University, the Mayo Clinic, Dartmouth University, Emory University and Boston University, the UT Southwestern Medical Center will explore the use of safe levels of electrical stimulation to improve brain function and memory. The aim is that their findings will help the development of an implantation device.The study will recruit neurosurgery patients who already undergo brain stimulation as part of their epilepsy treatment. Subjects will receive stimulation whilst playing memory games, and the researchers will assess whether or not it improves their memory performance.A statement from the UT Southwestern Medical Center revealed that it will be contributing to the study by recruiting 15 epilepsy patients per year to undergo stereo electroencephalography, a technique used to record in-depth brain activity in the diagnosis of epilepsy.It is hoped that this project will ultimately lead to new treatment solutions for people affected, not only by epilepsy, but also by those with neurodegenerative disorders, mild cognitive impairment or brain damage.Dr Bradley Lega, Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery, Neurology, Neurotherapeutics and Psychiatry, at the UT Southwestern Medical Center, said: “If memory can be improved in patients who have electrodes implanted to treat epilepsy – and who frequently have mild memory impairment – then we will have gained valuable information on how to restore memory function in patients with traumatic brain injury or Alzheimer’s disease.”Click here for more articles about other treatments for epilepsy.