Jaimie F Borisoff

University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA, United States

Are you Jaimie F Borisoff?

Claim your profile

Publications (21)67.1 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Sexual health is often severely impacted after spinal cord injury (SCI). Current research has primarily addressed male erection and fertility, when in fact pleasure and orgasm are top priorities for functional recovery. Sensory substitution technology operates by communicating input from a lost sensory pathway to another intact sensory modality. It was hypothesized that through training and neuroplasticity, mapped tongue sensations would be interpreted as sensory perceptions arising from insensate genitalia, and improve the sexual experience. To report the development of a sensory substitution system for the sexual rehabilitation of men with chronic SCI. Subjects performed sexual self-stimulation while using a novel sensory substitution device that mapped the stroking motion of the hand to a congruous flow of electrocutaneous sensations on the tongue. Three questionnaires, along with structured interviews, were used to rate the perceived sexual sensations following each training session. Subjects completed 20 sessions over approximately 8 weeks of training. Each subject reported an increased level of sexual pleasure soon after training with the device. Each subject also reported specific perceptions of cutaneous-like sensations below their lesion that matched their hand motion. Later sessions, while remaining pleasurable and interesting, were inconsistent, and no subject reported an orgasmic feeling during a session. The subjects were all interested in continuing training with the device at home, if possible, in the future. This study is the first to show that sensory substitution is a possible therapeutic avenue for sexual rehabilitation in people lacking normal genital sexual sensations. However more research, for instance on frequency and duration of training, is needed in order to induce functional lasting neuroplasticity. In the near term, SCI rehabilitation should more fully address sexuality and the role of neuroplasticity for promoting the maximal potential for sexual pleasure and orgasm.
    Journal of Sexual Medicine 11/2010; 7(11):3647-58. · 3.15 Impact Factor
  • Jaimie F. Borisoff
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: While the inherently small market for assistive technology (AT) can be a significant hurdle in the development of AT solutions, small markets can also provide opportunities to foster technology innovation under the right circumstances. Focusing on the wheelchair industry, I summarize the numerous obstacles that small companies face in trying to address small AT markets, as well as the range of opportunities available to assist small companies in their efforts to impact the quality of life of those with disabilities. Indeed, small market AT may be a perfect fit for the growing field of “small batch” manufacturing in combination with motivated individuals suddenly empowered by a host of new technologies. I close with a brief discussion of future possibilities for AT in small markets.
    12/2009: pages 105-113;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dorsal root injury (DRI) disrupts the flow of sensory information to the spinal cord. Although primary afferents do not regenerate to their original targets, spontaneous recovery can, by unknown mechanisms, occur after DRI. Here, we show that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), but not nerve growth factor or neurotrophin-4, are upregulated in the spinal gray matter after DRI. Because endogenous BDNF and NT-3 have well established roles in synaptic and axonal plasticity, we hypothesized that they contributed to spontaneous recovery after DRI. We first developed a model of DRI-induced mechanosensory dysfunction: rat C7/8 DRI produced a deficit in low-threshold cutaneous mechanosensation that spontaneously improved within 10 d but did not recover completely. To determine the effects of endogenous BDNF and NT-3, we administered TrkB-Fc or TrkC-Fc fusion proteins throughout the recovery period. To our surprise, TrkB-Fc stimulated complete recovery of mechanosensation by 6 d after DRI. It also stimulated mechanosensory axon sprouting but prevented deafferentation-induced serotonergic sprouting. TrkC-Fc had no effect on low-threshold mechanosensory behavior or axonal plasticity. There was no mechanosensory improvement with single-bolus TrkB-Fc infusions at 10 d after DRI (despite significantly reducing rhizotomy-induced cold pain), indicating that neuromodulatory effects of BDNF did not underlie mechanosensory recovery. Continuous infusion of the pan-neurotrophin antagonist K252a also stimulated behavioral and anatomical plasticity, indicating that these effects of TrkB-Fc treatment occurred independent of signaling by other neurotrophins. These results illustrate a novel, plasticity-suppressing effect of endogenous TrkB ligands on mechanosensation and mechanosensory primary afferent axons after spinal deafferentation.
    Journal of Neuroscience 06/2007; 27(21):5812-22. · 6.75 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Secure, web-based survey. Obtain information from the spinal cord injured (SCI) population regarding sexual dysfunctions, with the aim of developing new basic science and clinical research and eventual therapies targeting these issues. Worldwide web. Individuals 18 years or older living with SCI. Participants obtained a pass-code to enter a secure website and answered survey questions. A total of 286 subjects completed the survey. The majority of participants stated that their SCI altered their sexual sense of self and that improving their sexual function would improve their quality of life (QoL). The primary reason for pursuing sexual activity was for intimacy need, not fertility. Bladder and bowel concerns during sexual activity were not strong enough to deter the majority of the population from engaging in sexual activity. However, in the subset of individuals concerned about bladder and/or bowel incontinence during sexual activity, this was a highly significant issue. In addition, the occurrence of autonomic dysreflexia (AD) during typical bladder or bowel care was a significant variable predicting the occurrence and distress of AD during sexual activity. Sexual function and its resultant impact on QoL is a major issue to an overwhelming majority of people living with SCI. This certainly constitutes the need for expanding research in multiple aspects to develop future therapeutic interventions for sexual health and SCI.
    Spinal Cord 06/2007; 45(5):328-37. · 1.70 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Secure, web-based survey.Objectives:Elicit specific information about sexual function from men with spinal cord injuries (SCI). World-wide web.Methods:Individuals 18 years or older living with SCI obtained a pass-code to enter a secure website and then answered survey questions. The presence of genital sensation was positively correlated with the ability to feel a build up of sexual tension in the body during sexual stimulation and in the feeling that mental arousal translates to the genitals as physical sensation. There was an inverse relationship between developing new areas of arousal above the level of lesion and not having sensation or movement below the lesion. A positive relationship existed between the occurrence of spasticity during sexual activity and erectile ability. Roughly 60% of the subjects had tried some type of erection enhancing method. Only 48% had successfully achieved ejaculation postinjury and the most commonly used methods were hand stimulation, sexual intercourse, and vibrostimulation. The most commonly cited reasons for trying to ejaculate were for pleasure and for sexual intimacy. Less than half reported having experienced orgasm postinjury and this was influenced by the length of time postinjury and sacral sparing. SCI not only impairs male erectile function and ejaculatory ability, but also alters sexual arousal in a manner suggestive of neuroplasticity. More research needs to be pursued in a manner encompassing all aspects of sexual function.
    Spinal Cord 06/2007; 45(5):338-48. · 1.70 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Secure, web-based survey. Elicit specific information about sexual function from women with spinal cord injuries (SCI). World-wide web. Individuals 18 years or older living with SCI obtained a pass code to enter a secure website and then answered survey questions. Bladder and/or bowel incontinence during sexual activity and/or sexual intercourse were significant concerns and prevented some women from seeking sexual activity. Autonomic dysreflexia (AD) during sexual activity was interpreted negatively by many and was found to interfere with sexual activity. Most subjects reported difficulty becoming psychologically aroused as well as physically aroused, which were both correlated with feeling that their SCI had altered their sexual sense of self. An inverse relationship existed between developing new areas of arousal above the level of lesion and not having sensation or movement below the lesion. The most commonly reported sexual stimulation leading to the best arousal involved stimulation of the head/neck and torso areas. The majority of subjects reported having experienced intercourse postinjury. Most participants reported difficulty with positioning during foreplay and intercourse, vaginal lubrication, and spasticity during intercourse. Almost half reported experiencing orgasm postinjury and this was positively associated with the presence of genital sensation. SCI significantly impairs psychological and physical aspects of female sexual arousal. In addition, bladder and bowel incontinence as well as AD negatively impact sexual activity and intercourse.
    Spinal Cord 06/2007; 45(5):349-59. · 1.70 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Direct brain interface (BI) systems provide an alternative communication and control solution for individuals with severe motor disabilities, bypassing impaired interface pathways. Most BI systems are aimed to be operated by individuals with severe disabilities. With these individuals, there is no observable indicator of their intent to control or communicate with the BI system. In contrast, able-bodied subjects can perform the desired physical movements such as finger flexion and one can observe the movement as the indicator of intent. Since no external knowledge of intention is available for individuals with severe motor disabilities, generating the data for system training is problematic. This paper introduces three methods for generating training-data for self-paced BI systems and compares their performances with four alternative methods of training-data generation. Results of the offline analysis on the electroencephalogram data of eight subjects during self-paced BI experiments show that two of the proposed methods increase true positive rates (at fixed false positive rate of 2%) over that of the four alternative methods from 50.8%-58.4% to about 62% which corresponds to 3.6%-11.2% improvement.
    IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering 04/2007; 15(1):59-66. · 2.82 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Regeneration within or into the CNS is thwarted by glial inhibition at the site of a spinal cord injury and at the dorsal root entry zone (DREZ), respectively. At the DREZ, injured axons and their distal targets are separated by degenerating myelin and an astrocytic glia limitans. The different glial barriers to regeneration following dorsal rhizotomy are temporally and spatially distinct. The more peripheral astrocytic barrier develops first, and is surmountable by neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) treatment; the more central myelin-derived barrier, which prevents dorsal horn re-innervation by NT-3-treated axons, becomes significant only after the onset of myelin degeneration. Here we test the hypothesis that in the presence of NT-3, axonal regeneration is hindered by myelin degeneration products. To do so, we used the Long Evans Shaker (LES) rat, in which oligodendrocytes do not make CNS myelin, but do produce myelin-derived inhibitory proteins. We show that delaying NT-3 treatment for 1 week in normal (LE) rats, while allowing axonal penetration of the glia limitans and growth within degenerating myelin, results in misdirected regeneration with axons curling around presumptive degenerating myelin ovoids within the CNS compartment of the dorsal root. In contrast, delaying NT-3 treatment in LES rats resulted in straighter, centrally-directed regenerating axons. These results indicate that regeneration may be best optimized through a combination of neurotrophin treatment plus complete clearance of myelin debris.
    Neuroscience Letters 02/2007; 411(3):206-11. · 2.06 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: One avenue of research for partial restoration of function following spinal cord injury is the use of neural prostheses, an example of which is functional electrical stimulation (FES) devices for motor functions. Neural prostheses may also be useful for the extraction of sensory information directly from the nervous system. We suggest the spinal cord as a possible site for the detection of peripheral sensory information from neural activity alone. Acute multichannel extracellular recordings were used to extract neural spike activity elicited from peripheral sensations from the spinal cords of rats. To test the recording method and classification potential, eight classes of sensory events were recorded consisting of electrical stimulation of seven locations on rat forepaws, and another class of data during which no stimulus was present. A dual-stage classification scheme using principal component analysis and k-Means clustering was devised to classify the sensory events during single trials. The eight tasks were correctly identified at a mean accuracy of 96%. Thus, we have shown the methodology to detect and classify peripheral sensory information from multichannel recordings of the spinal cord. These methods may be useful, for example, in a closed-loop FES for restoration of hand grasp.
    IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering 09/2006; 53(8):1715-9. · 2.23 Impact Factor
  • Source
    J.F. Borisoff, S.G. Mason, G.E. Birch
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Neil Squire Society has developed asynchronous, direct brain switches for self-paced control applications with mean activation rates of 73% and false positive error rates of 2%. This report summarizes our results to date, lessons learned, and current directions, including research into implanted brain interface designs.
    IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering 07/2006; · 2.82 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We used acute multi-channel extracellular recording techniques to extract neural activity associated with external sensory events from the spinal cords of rats. Five classes of sensory events were recorded - electrical stimulation of the nerves in each of four digits from one forepaw and periods during which no stimulation occurred (idle periods). A simple feature extraction and classification scheme was devised to classify external sensory events during single trials. The five classes of sensory events were correctly identified at a mean accuracy of over 93%. Thus, we have shown the feasibility to detect and classify peripheral sensory information from multichannel recordings of the spinal cord. This would be useful following spinal cord injury, for example, in a closed-loop neural prosthetic for partial restoration of motor function through functional electrical stimulation
    Neural Engineering, 2005. Conference Proceedings. 2nd International IEEE EMBS Conference on; 04/2005
  • Angela L M Scott, Jaimie F Borisoff, Matt S Ramer
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Axonal plasticity in the adult spinal cord is governed by intrinsic neuronal growth potential and by extracellular cues. The p75 receptor (p75(NTR)) binds growth-promoting neurotrophins (NTs) as well as the common receptor for growth-inhibiting myelin-derived proteins (the Nogo receptor) and so is well situated to gauge the balance of positive and negative influences on axonal plasticity. Using transgenic mice lacking the extracellular NT-binding domain of p75(NTR) (p75-/- mice), we have examined the influence of p75(NTR) on changes in the density of primary afferent (calcitonin gene-related peptide-expressing) and descending monoaminergic (serotonin- and tyrosine hydroxylase-expressing) projections to the dorsal horn after dorsal rhizotomy, with and without concomitant application of exogenous nerve growth factor and NT-3. We found that, in intact p75-/- mice, the axon density of all populations was equal to or less than that in wild-type mice but that rhizotomy-induced intraspinal sprouting was significantly augmented. Monoaminergic axon sprouting was enhanced in both nerve growth factor- and NT-3-treated p75-/- mice compared with similarly treated wild-type mice. Primary afferent sprouting was particularly robust in NT-3-treated p75-/- mice. These in vivo results illustrate the interactions of p75(NTR) with NTs, with their respective tropomyosin-related kinase receptors and with inhibitory myelin-derived molecules. Our findings illustrate the pivotal role of p75(NTR) in spinal axonal plasticity and identify it as a potential therapeutic target for spinal cord injury.
    European Journal of Neuroscience 02/2005; 21(1):81-92. · 3.67 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The low frequency-asynchronous switch design (the LF-ASD) was introduced as a direct asynchronous brain computer interface (BCI) system. An asynchronous BCI system is activated only when a user intends control and maintains an inactive state output when a user is not meaning to control the device. Results from the LF-ASD evaluations have shown promise, although the reported error rates are still high for most practical applications. One reason is that, so far, no user customization has been done on the LF-ASD. In this paper genetic algorithms are applied to automatically customize the length of the energy normalization transform (ENT) in the LF-ASD. In a previous design, it has been shown that the ENT is probably the greatest source of improvement, so tuning it would probably yield the best short term results. Results for three subjects show encouraging results for the proposed algorithm with respect to the previous designs.
    Signal Processing and Information Technology, 2004. Proceedings of the Fourth IEEE International Symposium on; 01/2005
  • Leanne M Ramer, Jaimie F Borisoff, Matt S Ramer
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dorsal rhizotomy results in primary deafferentation of the dorsal horn with concomitant sprouting of spared intraspinal monoaminergic axons. Because descending monoaminergic systems are thought to mitigate nociceptive transmission from the periphery and because dorsal rhizotomy can result in neuropathic pain, we sought to determine whether the rhizotomy-induced sprouting response could be further augmented. Because myelin-derived molecules mask endogenous plasticity of CNS axons and because myelin-inhibitory signaling occurs through the Rho-GTPase pathway, we inhibited Rho-pathway signaling after cervical dorsal rhizotomy in rats. An increase in the density of serotonergic- and tyrosine hydroxylase-positive fibers was seen in the dorsal horn 1 week after septuple rhizotomy, and axon density continued to increase for at least 1 month. One week after septuple rhizotomy, administration of intrathecal Y-27632, an antagonist of Rho-kinase (ROCK), increased the density of both fiber types over vehicle-treated controls. To examine behavioral effects of both cervical rhizotomy and ROCK inhibition, we examined responses to evoked pain: mechanical and thermal allodynia and cold hyperalgesia in the forepaw were examined after single, double, and quadruple rhizotomies of dorsal roots of the brachial plexus. The most notable behavioral outcome was the development of cold hyperalgesia in the affected forepaw after rhizotomies of the C7 and C8 dorsal roots. Application of Y-27632 both attenuated cold hyperalgesia and induced monoaminergic plasticity after C7/8 rhizotomy. Thus, inhibition of Rho-pathway signaling both promoted the sprouting of intact supraspinal monoaminergic fibers and alleviated pain after dorsal rhizotomy.
    Journal of Neuroscience 01/2005; 24(48):10796-805. · 6.75 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The low-frequency asynchronous switch design (LF-ASD) was introduced as a direct brain-computer interface (BCI) technology for asynchronous control applications. The LF-ASD operates as an asynchronous brain switch (ABS) which is activated only when a user intends control and maintains an inactive state output when the user is not meaning to control the device (i.e., they may be idle, thinking about a problem, or performing some other action). Results from LF-ASD evaluations have shown promise, although the reported error rates are too high for most practical applications. This paper presents the evaluation of four new LF-ASD designs with data collected from individuals with high-level spinal cord injuries and able-bodied subjects. These new designs incorporated electroencephalographic energy normalization and feature space dimensionality reduction. The error characteristics of the new ABS designs were significantly better than the LF-ASD design with true positive rate increases of approximately 33% for false positive rates in the range of 1%-2%. The results demonstrate that the dimensionality of the LF-ASD feature space can be reduced without performance degradation. The results also confirm previous findings that spinal cord-injured subjects can operate ABS designs to the same ability as able-bodied subjects.
    IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering 07/2004; 51(6):985-92. · 2.23 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Mason and Birch have developed a direct brain-computer interface for intermittent control of devices such as environmental control systems and neuroprotheses. This EEG-based brain switch, named the LF-ASD, has been used in several off-line studies, but little is known about its usability with real-world devices and computer applications. In this study, able-bodied individuals and people with high-level spinal injury used the LF-ASD brain switch to control a video game in real time. Both subject groups demonstrated switch activations varying from 30% to 78% and false-positive rates in the range of 0.5% to 2.2% over three 1-hour test sessions. These levels correspond to switch classification accuracies greater than 94% for all subjects. The results suggest that subjects with spinal cord injuries can operate the brain switch to the same ability as able-bodied subjects in a real-time control environment. These results support the findings of previous studies.
    Journal of Clinical Neurophysiology 01/2004; 21(6):404-8. · 1.60 Impact Factor
  • Source
    G.E. Birch, S.G. Mason, J.F. Borisoff
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Neil Squire Foundation (NSF) is a Canadian nonprofit organization whose purpose is to create opportunities for independence for individuals who have significant physical disabilities. Over the last ten years, our team in partnership with researchers at the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, the University of British Columbia, has been working to develop a direct brain-controlled switch for individuals with significant physical disabilities. The NSF Brain Interface Project primarily focuses on the development of brain-computer interface switch technologies for intermittent (or asynchronous) control in natural environments. That is, technologies that will work when the user intends control but also remains in a stable off state when there is no intent to control. A prototype of such a switch has successfully been developed. This switch has demonstrated classification accuracies greater than 94%. The initial results are promising, but further research is required to improve switch accuracies and reliability and to test these switch technologies over a larger population of users and operating conditions. This paper provides an overview of the NSF brain-switch technologies and details our approach to future work in this area.
    IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering 07/2003; · 2.82 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Several molecules inhibit axonal growth cones and may account for the failure of central nervous system regeneration, including myelin proteins and various chondroitan sulfate proteoglycans expressed at the site of injury. Axonal growth inhibition by myelin and chondroitan sulfate proteoglycans may in part be controlled by Rho-GTPase, which mediates growth cone collapse. Here, we tested in vitro whether pharmacological inhibition of a major downstream effector of Rho, Rho-kinase, promotes axonal outgrowth from dorsal root ganglia grown on aggrecan. Aggrecan substrates stimulated Rho activity and were inhibitory to axonal growth. Y-27632 treatment promoted the growth of axons by 5- to 10-fold and induced “steamlined” growth cones with longer filopodia and smaller lamellipodia. Interestingly, more actin bundles reminiscent of stress fibers in the central domain of the growth cone were observed when grown on aggrecan compared to laminin. In addition, Y-27632 significantly promoted axonal growth on both myelin and adult rat spinal cord cryosections. Our data suggest that suppression of Rho-kinase activity may enhance axonal regeneration in the central nervous system.
    Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience 04/2003; · 3.73 Impact Factor
  • Brian K Kwon, Jaimie F Borisoff, Wolfram Tetzlaff
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In an effort to develop therapies for promoting neurological recovery after spinal cord injury, much work has been done to identify the cellular and molecular factors that control axonal regeneration within the injured central nervous system. This review summarizes the current understanding of a number of the elements within the spinal cord environment that inhibit axonal growth and outlines the factors that influence the neuron's ability to regenerate its axon after injury. Recent insights in these areas have identified important molecular pathways that are potential targets for therapeutic intervention, raising hope for victims of spinal cord injury.
    Molecular Interventions 08/2002; 2(4):244-58. · 12.14 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Functional regeneration of brainstem-spinal pathways occurs in the developing chick when the spinal cord is severed prior to embryonic day (E) 13. Functional spinal cord regeneration is not observed in animals injured after E13. This developmental transition from a permissive to a restrictive repair period may be due to the formation of an extrinsic inhibitory environment preventing axonal growth, and/or an intrinsic inability of mature neurons to regenerate. Here, we investigated the capacity of specific populations of brainstem-spinal projection neurons to regrow neurites in vitro from young (E8) versus mature (E17) brainstem explants. A crystal of carbocyanine dye (DiI) was implanted in ovo into the E5 cervical spinal cord to retrogradely label brainstem-spinal projection neurons. Three or 12 days later, discrete regions of the brainstem containing DiI-labeled neurons were dissected to produce explant cultures grown in serum-free media on laminin substrates. The subsequent redistribution of DiI into regenerating processes permitted the study of in vitro neurite outgrowth from identified brainstem-spinal neurons. When explanted on E8, i.e., an age when brainstem-spinal neurons are normally elongating through the spinal cord and are capable of in vivo functional regeneration, robust neurite outgrowth was observed from all brainstem populations, including rubro-, reticulo-, vestibulo-, and raphe-spinal neurons. In contrast, when explanted on E17, robust neurite outgrowth was seen only from raphe-spinal neurons. Neurite outgrowth from raphe-spinal neurons was 5-hydroxy-tryptamine immunoreactive. This study demonstrates that in growth factor-free environments with permissive growth substrates, neurite outgrowth from brainstem-spinal neurons is dependent on both neuronal age and phenotype.
    Experimental Neurology 12/2000; 166(1):16-28. · 4.62 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

562 Citations
67.10 Total Impact Points


  • 2007
    • University of California, Irvine
      • Department of Neurological Surgery
      Irvine, CA, United States
  • 2000–2007
    • University of British Columbia - Vancouver
      • • International Collaboration on Repair Discoveries (ICORD)
      • • Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
      • • Department of Zoology
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada