Help seniors affected by the California wildfires! Donate now and your gift will be matched up to a total of $500,000.
by Gabrielle Redford, AARP The Magazine, March/April 2004 issue
The idea is so wildly far-fetched, so enormously brazen, it seems straight out of a science-fiction novel. Ted Berger, 53, director of the Center for Neural Engineering at the University of Southern California, is building a brain implant that one day could partially restore physical and mental function in brains damaged by stroke, Alzheimer's, even Parkinson's. "I believe in the end that the implant will not have to be perfect to radically improve how a damaged brain works," Berger says. For the last 15 years, he has led a team of scientists dedicated to dissecting the inner workings of the hippocampus—the region of the brain that controls learning and memory—and translating that onto a computer chip. Berger plans to test the chip in live rats later this year and, if all goes well, will begin human trials in 10 to 15 years.
*The name of this award was originally the Impact Award. In 2008, the awards were renamed as the Inspire Awards.
Please leave your comment below.
You must be logged in to leave a comment.
Members save 25% on their first healthy meal delivery order of 99+.
Members save 15% all day, every day at participating locations.
AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.
You are leaving AARP.org and going to the website of our trusted provider. The provider’s terms, conditions and policies apply. Please return to AARP.org to learn more about other benefits.
Your email address is now confirmed.
Manage your email preferences and tell us which topics interest you so that we can prioritize the information you receive.
Explore all that AARP has to offer.
In the next 24 hours, you will receive an email to confirm your subscription to receive emails
related to AARP volunteering. Once you confirm that subscription, you will regularly
receive communications related to AARP volunteering. In the meantime, please feel free
to search for ways to make a difference in your community at