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Long-term interaction with the implantable device and the body takes a toll on these implantable devices. Impedance degradation, scar tissue formation, and inflammation around the implant area can have deleterious effects on the functioning of implanted devices. Building robust and scalable long-term implants could advance the understanding of brain networks related to network disorders. Therefore, it is desirable to develop long-lasting, high performance implantable devices.
The electrode contains a bi-component conductor comprising a metal layer and a graphene passivation layer. As a passivation layer, graphene may block chemical reactions between the underlying metal and body tissues. This allows for the use of metals more efficient in charge transfer which may increase device battery life and lower the cost of current implantable devices. Additionally, graphene has potential to decrease tissue damage over metals currently used for electrodes, thus allowing probes to remain implanted for longer times than is currently practiced.