Brain Transplant: Is it Feasible and Achievable?

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In his quest of knowledge, mankind has been pushing the limits further and further. With scientific breakthroughs bestowing you with the unimaginable and the impossible, it is not long before brain transplantation becomes a common phenomenon. In what was till date regarded as a mission impossible, extensive research and experiments are being zealously carried out to achieve the ultimate medical miracle.


In layman’s terms, brain transplant is nothing but transferring the brain of one individual into the body of another. Amusingly, there has always been a debate on whether it should be called brain transplantation or body transplantation. Nevertheless, this whole idea has not yet taken shape due to the inability of the scarred nerve cells to heal properly thereby hampering smooth and accurate signal transmissions. Besides, the interface with the spinal chord challenges the feasibility of the whole process as the nerves may not really match. In other words, transplantation might cause the nerve endings controlling one part to connect to the nerve ending controlling some other part resulting in utter chaos and lack of synchrony.


The key lies in preserving the memory and the identity of the individual without which the whole process is simply futile. A more realistic scenario would be partial brain transplant where a certain section, maybe a lobe is all that is transplanted. In the past ,experiments have been successfully conducted on mice. Dr. Robert J. White from Ohio has already performed countless successful head transfer experiments on monkeys. He claims to have devised methods by which the human brain can be isolated from its blood supply and kept alive for a very short duration and with rapid scientific developments in spinal chord functioning, brain transplant is not a far off fairytale anymore. Also, there are some articles which continually refer to brain as an ‘immunologically privileged place’ thereby hinting at the independent functioning and possibilities of transplantation.


The most enthralling aspect of this process would be how mankind would morph into the class of immortals. Let’s say the first transplant was conducted on one individual with a healthy brain but suffering from cancer and another one on a near dead brain but in a healthy body. The two brains were fused together till the healthier brain monopolistically pre-dominated in the healthier body. So, we now have a healthy strong individual instead of two weak ones. Continuing in this manner and following Charles Darwin’s survival of the fittest theory, we get a brand new species of mankind virtually immortal and disease-free.


This immediately leads to the larger debate; about the ethicality concerning the issue, the bioethics. In my opinion, it is nothing less than a grotesque breach of ethics and a perilous play with nature. It puts to question the whole meaning of life and morality. Science claims but never guarantees. Merging of personalities, ages, swapping of sexes is certainly not a child’s play. Man is blindfolded by the lure of science and cannot foresee the consequent disaster that awaits him. What he is forgetting is that the most beautiful gift a man has is living his life…it cannot be relived with the same charisma. Challenging God’s gift will lead to nowhere sans major catastrophe.


Yashi Trivedi

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  1. translated by google
    vBrain Transplant opinion.
    It seems to me very good scientists to move into this field.
    Actually you can apply many “technical” in order to prolong the life
    And I imagine that over time will improve and the faster the better.
    Roll really all brain transplant (for one still alive) I would not like a lot is that I should die another human being, maybe I would not feel at all bad if the new body of one was manufactured
    within months or a very short time and to avoid the minimum possible that this body “alive” or something similar.
    That maybe this live sometime I could fix clone manipulating DNA so that the body always is in a coma (or something), and as good can be said of someone who always been in a coma “has lived something? Is a possible solution just saying.

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  2. Interesting read !

    May be brain transplant will become a reality in near future , considering technological advance in relevant field and success already achieved in heart transplant etc . What surprises me is aspect of bioethics as put forth by you . Brain is just another organ of a living being no more or no less than heart or any other in that respect , so where is the question of ethic involved in brain transplant if it was not so in heart transplant . Have you observed any difference in conduct of those persons who have undergone a heart transplant ..well though I dont know one such , I have not heard anything like that . So considering that brain is just another organ of human , it is not likely that a brain of one person , if installed in another person by transplant as your discussion suggests would make any difference in his behavior , there will no mixing of personalities too such !

    Suppose an intellectual computer operator used one computer to do some work involving great intellect , that computer failed and he used another computer to continue his work , will it make any difference to the quality of the work done by said individual by mere change of computer since the earlier one failed ….obviously NO !

    I think change of brain by brain transplant would be a similar happening only and , the individual that used his own brain that was on him by virtue of God given birth , will only use the newly installed brain , no more or no less than in case of computer as in above case ….so I think within my considered rational logic !

    If one regards a thing like bio ethic , one must give regard to spiritual thought as well , and consider individual as a soul within the living body and NOT as a mere living body …since it is the soul that uses each organ at his disposal , including heart and brain …whatever !

    That matter considering inducing lucid dreams by various means would be simply futile….considering this Soul aspect , no science rationale can rationalise what happens to soul , where it comes from and where it goes to , so too where the soul resides when one is asleep ; mere analysis of how brain acts during sleep does not justify anything what so ever ! And yes soul can be considered as a rationally available entity considering that basic matter , living or non living is one and the same , after soul escapes a living being !

  3. Thanks for submitting this post to our blog carnival. We just published the 48th edition of Brain Blogging and your article was featured!

    Thank you.


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