Brain-net: Telepathic mice first step in creation of biological computer

| March 4, 2013
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Credit: Flickr/SMercury98
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Using neurotechnology, scientists have created rats that can communicate telepathically across continents.

The researchers attached electrode arrays to the brains of two rats, and connected the implants with a wire. The implants translated the neural signals of one rat into electrical signals, which were sent via the wire into the brain of the second rat, where another implant translated the electric signals back into neural signals. The brain-to-brain communication allowed the rats to cooperate to solve a challenge and get a reward. 

Miguel Nicolelis, a pioneer of research into brain-computer interfaces at Duke University in North Carolina, said the experiments could lead to the creation of a biological computer — or “brain-net” — linking multiple brains. “We cannot even predict what kinds of emergent properties would appear when animals begin interacting as part of a brain-net,” he said. “In theory, you could imagine that a combination of brains could provide solutions that individual brains cannot achieve by themselves. One animal might even incorporate another’s sense of self.”

Read the full article here: Do telepathic rats advent biologic computers?

The GLP featured this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. The viewpoint is the author’s own. The GLP’s goal is to stimulate constructive discourse on challenging science issues.

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