Halloween is here, so what better time to talk about human brains? Zombies are always looking to eat fresh human brains, and evil scientists need to re-stock their supply of replacement organs, too. So here are just a few links for any parties that might be interested in getting their hands on some grey matter.
- Whole brain transplants don’t seem to be a practical medical procedure (yet), but maybe brain tissue engineering could help people with brain damage with brain grafts. Restoring neural pathways would be tricky, and growing viable brain tissue isn’t a walk in the park either. [url]
- Dr. Robert White performed some experiments that could have been useful for doing a human brain transplant. White successfully removed a living monkey’s head and attached it to another monkey’s body — and it survived for about a week. [url]
- A human brain about 2,684 years old was found, preserved in a bog, in excellent condition for its age. It apparently belonged to an Iron Age man who was hanged and decapitated — and when 2,684 years old you reach, look as good you will not. [url]
- Scientists have isolated the brains of monkeys, dogs and cats — keeping them alive for varying amounts of time without a body — and a guinea pig brain has lasted about 8 hours in a fluid-filled tank. This is a repeatable procedure, but it apparently requires a lot of attention to keep the guinea pig brain going (and it only works for a day). [url]
If you’d like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post.