2016 Schedule

Interactive: March 11–15  •  Film: March 11–19  •  Music: March 15–20

Hacking the Brain to Treat Paralysis

Saturday, March 12
3:30PM - 4:30PM

JW Marriott
Room 203-204
110 E 2nd St

In 2010, a young man named Ian Burkhart went swimming in the ocean. Hitting a sandbar, he broke his neck and was paralyzed. With no guarantee of success, he joined a clinical trial at The Ohio State University conducted with Battelle. Ian had a small chip implanted in the motor cortex of his brain and became the first person to use brain implant technology to regain voluntary movement of paralyzed muscles. In this panel, Ian, the surgeon who operated on him, Dr. Ali Rezai, a Battelle engineer that helped develop the technology, Nick Annetta, and Dr. Marcia Bockbrader, who has aided Ian’s recovery, will talk about their shared journey and the technologies that give Ian and many others hope.

Hashtags: #sxsw #BrainHack


Ali Rezai at SXSW

Ali Rezai

Dir CEO OSU Neurological Institute

The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center

Ali Rezai, MD, is director of Ohio State’s Center for Neuromodulation. A board certified neurosurgeon, he has been involved in pioneering the use of brain pacemakers for treating Parkinson’s diseas...

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Ian Burkhart at SXSW

Ian Burkhart

Varsity Lacrosse Coach

Dublin Jerome High School

Ian, celebrating the completion of his freshman year of college with friends in North Carolina, was diving into the water, when a wave forced him into a sandbar headfirst. Experiencing pain and num...

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Marcie Bockbrader at SXSW

Marcie Bockbrader

Asst Professor, Dept of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation; Research Physiatrist

The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center

Dr. Marcie Bockbrader earned her PhD in Psychological and Brain Science from Indiana University, her medical degree from the Ohio State University, and continued at Ohio State for specialty trainin...

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Nick Annetta at SXSW

Nick Annetta

Electrical Engineer

Battelle Memorial Institute

Nick received his M.Eng. in electrical engineering from Cornell University. Working in the medical devices group at Battelle, his experience covers a wide range of projects. He has worked on hard...

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