Ricoh Co., Ltd., which is advancing research and development of biomagnetic measurement technology in collaboration with Kanazawa Institute of Technology, held the "2016th International Nanotechnology Exhibition / Technology" held at Tokyo Big Sight from January 1 to 27, 29. At the "Conference", we received the "nano tech grand prize" for innovative and pioneering technologies and products.
The award-winning technology is "visualization of spinal cord function," which is a technology using a spinal cord meter that is being jointly researched and developed by Kanazawa Institute of Technology, Ricoh Co., Ltd., and Tokyo Medical and Dental University.A spinal cord meter is a device that detects the magnetic field generated by the activity of the spinal nerve on the body surface and visualizes the position and magnitude of the current of the nerve signal.Since the magnetic field generated by nerves is extremely weak, it must be detected using a highly sensitive magnetic field sensor called a superconducting quantum interference element (SQUID).
Since 1999, Kanazawa Institute of Technology Advanced Electronic Technology Application Research Institute has been conducting research on spinal cord-induced magnetic fields using superconducting sensors in collaboration with Tokyo Medical and Dental University Orthopedic Surgery, and succeeded in developing the world's first spinometer. In 2014, Ricoh Co., Ltd. joined the joint research and development and provided advanced image processing technology, which led to the realization of a more complete prototype spinometer, which is approaching practical use.
By using the spinal cord meter currently under development, it will be possible to perform non-invasive spinal nerve function tests that can be observed from outside the body without damaging the body. When combined with other diagnostic imaging equipment such as MRI, it is possible to more accurately identify the causative site of limb paralysis, numbness, etc., and it is expected to be useful for diagnosing spinal cord diseases that were previously difficult to diagnose. ..