Salk scientists have developed a new way to selectively activate brain, heart, muscle and other cells using ultrasonic waves. The new technique, dubbed sonogenetics, has some similarities to the burgeoning use of light to activate cells in order to better understand the brain.
This new method–which uses the same type of waves used in medical sonograms–may have advantages over the light-based approach–known as optogenetics–particularly when it comes to adapting the technology to human therapeutics.
Ref: Sonogenetics is a non-invasive approach to activating neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans. Nature Communications (2015) | DOI: 10.1038/ncomms9264