UCLA scientists publish findings that show a paralyzed man was able to voluntarily control his leg muscles and take steps in a robotic exoskeleton device. Jim Drury reports.
Mark Pollock gets back on his feet - five years after becoming paralysed from the waist down. The Briton is wearing a battery-powered exoskeleton that allows him to move his legs in a step-like fashion. The device captures data that allows scientists from the University of California, Los Angeles to see whether he's moving his limbs independently or being aided by the suit. Data showed Pollock - who's also blind - is the first person with complete paralysis to regain enough voluntary control to actively work with an exoskeleton. The Commonwealth Games medallist was also able to flex his knee with the aid of electrical spinal stimulation. The researchers do not describe his steps as "walking" because of the need for the robotic device and stimulation. But the 39-year-old has now taken thousands of steps, describing his training as "addictive".