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Bionic Brains And What Science Can Foresee46:21
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Brain implants. Today in rats, maybe tomorrow in humans. Enhancing our memory. Enhancing our minds.

A template brain used to assist in the study of anatomical brain differences. (National Science Foundation)
A template brain used to assist in the study of anatomical brain differences. (National Science Foundation)

A brain implant. Now, it was in a rat. But it’s proven what can be done.

And offered a glimpse of what’s coming for humans. There is lots of talk about the “bionic brain.” To repair injuries, like Gabby Giffords’.

To supplement brains like yours and mine. Check out this headline: "Intel Wants Brain Implants in Customers Heads by 2020."

It’s exciting, and it’s scary.

This hour On Point: the latest on the bionic brain.

- Tom Ashbrook

Guests:

Benedict Carey, science reporter for The New York Times. His story on memory 'implants' in rat brains appeared recently in the paper.

Theodore Berger, lead author on the study [PDF here] on brain implants in rats. He is a professor of biomedical engineering and director of the Center for Neural Engineering at the University of Southern California.

David Eagleman, neuroscientist, best-selling author and columnist. He directs the Laboratory for Perception and Action and the Initiative on Neuroscience and Law at Baylor College of Medicine at Houston’s Baylor College of Medicine and author of "Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain," "Wednesday Is Indigo Blue: Discovering the Brain of Synesthesia" and the forthcoming book, "LiveWired."

This program aired on June 21, 2011.

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