MAY 23, 2018 7:22 AM PDT

Pig Brains Kept Alive in a Lab?


When the brain stops functioning, the body will eventually die, usually quite soon after. However, MIT's Technology Review reports that a team at Yale was able to take brains from pigs which were slaughtered for food and re-animate the organ. Some of the brains even had billions of cells still working and capable of regular cellular activity such as transmitting signals. The team at Yale described their findings at a March meeting of the National Institutes of Health which was called to discuss bioethical concerns given how much advancement there has been in the field of neuroscience.

The Yale researchers used bags of artificial blood, pumps, heaters and electrical signals to get the brains animated again, and while they were not conscious, the work is "mind-boggling." While Yale neuroscientist Nenad Sestan mentioned his work at the meeting, he had no further comment, telling Technology Review that his research has yet to be published and he was not aware his comments were going to be public. Keeping a brain alive depends on oxygen, and a system of pumps and micro-circulation can deliver oxygen to cells, but it's a long way to keeping a brain around long enough to transplant into a body. That is still the stuff of science fiction movies.
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
NOV 06, 2020
Space & Astronomy
300 Million Planets in the Milky Way May Be Habitable
NOV 06, 2020
300 Million Planets in the Milky Way May Be Habitable
Researchers have found that there could be at least 300 million habitable worlds in the Milky Way galaxy. This could mea ...
DEC 15, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Over-the-air Charging - How Close Are We to Realize Tesla's Vision?
DEC 15, 2020
Over-the-air Charging - How Close Are We to Realize Tesla's Vision?
When inventor and visionary Nikola Tesla erected his Wardenclyffe Tower, a 186-feet tall and 68-feet wide monstrous towe ...
FEB 19, 2021
Plants & Animals
What can Lemurs Teach us About Love?
FEB 19, 2021
What can Lemurs Teach us About Love?
Although not entirely accurate, romantic sentiments such as "you're my lobster" or "you're my pen ...
MAR 03, 2021
Plants & Animals
Can Arctic Bearded Seals Compete with Human Noise?
MAR 03, 2021
Can Arctic Bearded Seals Compete with Human Noise?
Vocal communication is a primary key to survival for many species, including the Arctic Ocean's bearded seals. Accor ...
JUL 03, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Size of Planet Iron Core Depends on Star Magnetism
JUL 03, 2021
Size of Planet Iron Core Depends on Star Magnetism
Researchers led by the University of Maryland have found that the sun's magnetic field is the reason behind the larg ...
JUL 09, 2021
Cell & Molecular Biology
Wearable Tech for...Plants?
JUL 09, 2021
Wearable Tech for...Plants?
Researchers have developed a "wearable" patch to detect the gaseous substances plants emit when diseased or stressed,
Loading Comments...