First human head transplant could happen in 2017.
J Thoendell stashed this in Science
A radical plan for transplanting a head onto someone else’s body is set to be announced. But is such ethically sensitive surgery even feasible?
IT'S heady stuff. The world's first attempt to transplant a human head will be launched this year at a surgical conference in the US. The move is a call to arms to get interested parties together to work towards the surgery.
The idea was first proposed in 2013 by Sergio Canavero of the Turin Advanced Neuromodulation Group in Italy. He wants to use the surgery to extend the lives of people whose muscles and nerves have degenerated or whose organs are riddled with cancer. Now he claims the major hurdles, such as fusing the spinal cord and preventing the body's immune system from rejecting the head, are surmountable, and the surgery could be ready as early as 2017.
This is going to be attempted way sooner than I thought. Wow.
Reminds me of the plot of Heinlein's "I Will Fear No Evil"!
The story takes place in the early 21st century against a background of an overpopulated Earth with a violent, dysfunctional society. Elderly billionaire Johann Sebastian Bach Smith is being kept alive through medical support and decides to have his brain transplanted into a new body. He advertises an offer of a million dollars for the donation of a body from a brain-dead patient. Smith omits to place any restriction on the sex of the donor, so when his beautiful young female secretary, Eunice Branca, is murdered, her body is used. He changes his name to Joan Eunice Smith.
Eunice's personality continues to co-inhabit the body and they can communicate. They agree never to reveal her continued being, fearing that they would be judged insane and locked up. Smith's identity is unsuccessfully challenged by his descendants, who hope to inherit his fortune. Smith and Eunice decide to have a baby together and so they (Joan) are artificially inseminated using Smith's sperm from the sperm bank. Joan (Smith) explores her new sexuality at length. They (Johann & Eunice/Joan) go to visit Eunice's widower, Joe Branca, to try and help reconcile him to what has happened.
Joan (Eunice) marries her lawyer, Jake Salomon, and moves her household and friends onto a boat. Jake has a massive rupture of a large blood vessel in his brain and dies but his personality is saved and joins Smith and Eunice in Joan's head. She (Smith, Eunice & Jake) emigrates to the moon to find a better future for her (Smith & Eunice's) child. Once there, her body starts to reject her (Smith's) transplanted brain. She dies during childbirth.
Note: the story also includes usage of the phrase "classic rock" ten years prior to the first classic rock station broadcast.
Wow, I didn't realize Heinlein coined the term classic rock.
That Heinlein story is interesting but complicated by them living in the same head.
Sounds like a variation of Being John Malkovich!
OK that's the craziest thing I've ever heard - I didn't realize anyone was actually thinking about such a thing.....I'm all for science moving forward with whatever it can dream up, however toward the end of the article they bring in the skeptical points of view............I'd have to say that it seems that we would need to reliably be able to reverse or bypass spinal cord injuries to cure paralysis, before we would be able to connect a brain to a whole body and have it wor
Sounds like something out of SciFi or horror. Dr Frankenstein, perhaps?
But imagine the possibilities if it works. As you said...