February 27, 2013

Living human heads in jars

Remember the living Nixon head-in-a-jar on the show Futurama? This might be a possibility -- no, not Nixon's head, but maybe yours.

A story at physorg suggests that brain neurons do not have pre-set life spans. This is shocking and intriguing. Scientists moved neurons from the brain of a mouse with a rather short life span, and put them into a rat's brain. The neurons continued to live -- and aged at a rate similar to the rat's longer-lived neurons. The inference is that neurons live as long as their surroundings support them.

Get the picture? Heads in jars may be coming to a site near you. Just imagine what fun it will be to have Aunt Tilly's head in a jar on the mantel, where you can talk to her all you want. Who needs bodies when you've got heads?

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