The most advanced piece of the human body, and one of the greatest mysteries of our existence, the human brain, will receive a new perk: a remote control brain drug implant. A new tiny new spark of ingenuity – this device will permit us to take our meds by simply pushing a button.
The human brain is so advanced that, according to Star Trek, we will not have fully understood how it works not even in the 23rd century. However, we may be on the right path to disprove this theory as we’re constantly developing new fascinating research, and interesting devices which bring us further into the mystery of the human mind.
One of these little baby steps we are taking may just well be this new implant developed by scientists from the partnered universities of Illinois and Washington. So what did they actually do that is so widely presented as revolutionary?
They drew inspiration from the safest method which already existed of giving drugs to the brain. That is, implanting small devices directly into the brain. The main problem was that prior to their breakthrough, the devices were a bit big, the operation to insert them into our minds was invasive and risky, and could easily led to such disasters as brain damage. This is all due to penetrating the brain’s tissue, which is extremely sensitive and delicate.
This newest device, no wider than a human hair follicle, can be implanted directly into the brain, due to its small dimensions. It can contain specific medication which a patient may need. It has wireless technology which can permit it to release these meds whenever the patient needs them. Inside it has four sacks or chambers, microscale channels, and pumps which control the flow of the liquid drugs.
The main advantage of the device is that it can be placed not only in the brain but also in other organs, and it can be triggered remotely using infrared technology. Similar to a remote control for your TV, the follicle of the device receive wireless signals and then acts accordingly.
The researchers tested it on mice with promising results. They put the mice freely in a maze and then released a drug which made them run around in circles, then lighted the cells that trigger dopamine so that the mice felt happy, and then released another drug which stopped the effects of the dopamine.
Further lab tested is permitted, and the researchers are now hoping for the approval of testing on a human subject.
Image source: gizmag.com