Scientists think they have a way to bring the dead back to life
A biotech group has been given permission to test a radical new experiment that would bring the dead back to life. The test will be conducted on legally brain dead subjects.
A group of US-based researchers received permission to try something that is, well, more than a little bizarre sounding, but it could lead to a massive medical breakthrough. An Institutional Review Board in the U.S. and India granted the American biotech company Bioquark the authority – both practical and ethical – to test the theory that could bring the dead back to life.
If you’ve seen any horror movies from the 80s that idea should curdle your blood, but it’s a little more clinical than zombie-like.
The group is preparing to test its theories on a group of 20 patients, all ruled as being clinically brain dead. Each patients is being kept alive entirely by artificial means – if removed from the machines they are attached to, they would almost immediately die. That makes them the closest thing to a dead patient biotech group can test on and still potentially show the desired results.
The experiment will use a combination of therapies, including stem cells and a cocktail of chemicals. The tests will be completed over the course of months, with the researchers constantly monitoring for any neurological reactivation. The main target of the experiment will be the upper spinal cord and the lowermost part of the brain, the area responsible for cardiorespitory functions. If the process works, it will take weeks, even months, but the patient’s body should be able to function without any help.
“To undertake such a complex initiative, we are combining biologic regenerative medicine tools with other existing medical devices typically used for stimulation of the central nervous system, in patients with other severe disorders of consciousness,” Bioquark’ CEO told the Telegraph. “We hope to see results within the first two to three months.”
Overall, the goal of the test is to see if neurons in the brain can be revitalized. The closest comparison to the experiment is found in the animal kingdom, where animals like the salamander are capable of regrowing lost limbs. If the patient’s neurons can be convinced to regenerate and begin to manufacture neurotransmitters, the brain may be able to reset and restore itself to a healthy condition. At least in theory.
The experiment is based on intellectual ideas more than proven clinical test results. The experts working on and advising the tests are well known throughout the neurological research world, so this isn’t fringe science, even if it sounds a bit out there.
Trials are set to begin soon in Anupam Hospital in Rudrapur, Uttarakhand, India. The patients will be given a consistent combination of peptides, which act like neurotransmitters, along with multiple injections of stem cells.
If the experiment succeeds completely and the brain is restored, it’s not exactly clear what will happen or what quality of life they will have. The patient may be completely restored to health with total cognitive function, or they may awake with severe brain damage. They may be able to survive without the assistance of machines, but offer no cognitive function. This is all completely unexplored territory, and much of it may come down to the individual patient.
The test is being conducted on people that are still technically alive, albeit brain dead. In the future though, if patients are brought into an emergency room and die there, or die en route, in theory, they could be brought back to life. This is still all just theoretical at the moment, but the potential is too much to ignore.