Monday, June 10, 2013

The Cyborg Era Begins

Looks like I'm up for a trip to the library, just came across an intriguingly titled paper: The Cyborg Era Begins by Robert F. Service in Science in the area of Bioelectronics.

Abstract: Electronic components are invading the body. In the lab, cling wrap–like circuitry draped over the hearts of test animals can track the activity of each of the heart's four chambers and kill tissue that initiate potentially deadly arrhythmias. Other arrays penetrate brain tissue to monitor the abnormal nerve firing patterns in epilepsy or induce gene expression in the brain tissue of mice. One team has even made a 3D printed bionic ear able to pick up ultrasonic bleats that humans cannot hear. These early prototypes can't produce science-fiction cyborgs; most are used in medicine. But over time, expect devices that will make us better athletes and soldiers, or even improve our complexions.

Science 7 June 2013:
Vol. 340 no. 6137 pp. 1162-1165
DOI: 10.1126/science.340.6137.1162
Robert F. Service

M. Scott Veach and I have been discussing the ethics of replacing our organs so that we can live forever, or until the batteries run down at least, in the comments of my Brain Boost Button one step closer article from last year. Ahead of the curve again it seems...