Serosa: Towards Gut-Brain Computer Interfacing (GBCI)

Angela Vujic 

Serosa records gastrointestinal (stomach and intestinal) signals. Serosa aims for cognitive enhancement via the mind-gut connection by aiding an individual to modulate gut signal.

The gut has been shown to have a connection to emotion, memory, decision-making, and more. The recent boom in microbiome research has begun to describe this interaction on the microbial level. We are inspired by this to begin recording neuronal information from the "gut-brain"—hundreds of millions of neurons that line the gastrointestinal tract—to study their relationship to cognitive phenomena as well.

In our research, have also recorded and analyzed gut signals while participants view emotional films, play the Iowa Gambling Card Task, and from real-world pilot studies. We have iterated and tested multiple electrode types and electrode montages to contribute information to form factor and signal quality.

We have seen in our studies a relationship between reported emotions and gut signals, and interoceptive abilities and gut signals, and the trade-offs between varying form factors and electrode types. 

We seek to show from our data and contributions how gastrointestinal signals may be used for emotion regulation and other applications for GBCIs. We aim to apply principles of non-invasive brain-computer interfacing (BCI) by using electrodes to record large-scale gut neuron activity and return feedback to the user.