People have long recognized that the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and peripheral nerve systems are incredibly complex systems. Researchers have sought to understand them from a chemical standpoint, an electrical standpoint, or on the basis of the cells that make up the systems.

Today, the new field of neuroengineering uses an interdisciplinary engineering approach to examine the function, and manipulate the behavior of, nervous systems using elements of computational biology, neuroscience, electrical engineering, signal processing, chemistry and chemical engineering, and other formerly separate disciplines.

In 2010, the Center for Implantable Devices was formed under the leadership of Professor Pedro Irazoqui. Its mission is to lead research, development, and translation of implantable medical devices, to formalize collaborations between CID faculty, clinicians, and commercial partners, and to maximize clinical impact through its collaborative projects.

At the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, multidisciplinary teams of researchers are making tremendous advances in neuroengineering. From prevention of, and treatments for, paralysis to brain-computer interface research that is helping victims of degenerative disease to communicate, Purdue is leading the way.