Optogenetics is an emerging field combining optical and genetic techniques to probe neural circuits within intact mammals and other animals, at the high speeds (millisecond-timescale) needed to understand brain information processing.
In the case of this article, certain algae in pond scum contained light sensitive material that would respond reflexively to fiber optically transmitted light. When the algae was injected into brain neurons that controlled certain body parts, and flashed with fiber optic light, the resultant body part would move. So far tested on monkeys and rats, but soon on humans with paralysis and similar ailments.
client : wired
direction : victor krummenacher