With a combination of physical therapy and computers, paralyzed patients may one day be able to move their limbs. Researchers at the University of Washington used monkeys to test artificial connections between the brain and paralyzed muscles. They implanted electrodes into the part of the brain that controls voluntary movement, and then created pathways for signals to go from the brain to muscles that were not stimulated naturally. They found the monkeys were able to move previously paralyzed wrist muscles.
They say the research is at least ten years away from human use, but they are very encouraged by the results.