is it possible to keep the brain alive outside the body

I want to live forever, or I think I do. Hmmm, that’s something to ponder. Preferably, I would like to live in an updated version of my body. If not, a new body would be fine. Before I can be updated, maybe my consciousness, who I am, has to be transported to a holding tank of sorts. Maybe my brain has to survive on its own. Do you think this can be done and there is a way to keep the brain alive outside the body? Now I am thinking about Dr. Frankenstein again. My mind seems to go there quite often.

The Possibility of Keeping the Brain Alive Outside the Body

It is possible to keep the brain alive outside the body. The question is, for how long. When reading the facts, I’ve found that it takes a lot of babysitting work to keep the brain safe. Well, it’s complicated really. Let me try and explain.

In order for the brain to survive, it has to be surrounded by the same environment in which it came from. When the brain is removed, it is in shock. It’s kind of like transporting a fish from an old tank to a new one. If surroundings aren’t correct, the brain experiences the death of tissue. There must be electrolytes and a correct PH level, for one. Antioxidants help the brain heal from any tissue lost during the transport.

The fluids must also remain at body temperature, and of course, the brain needs plenty of oxygen. That’s a given.

A New Vehicle/ Not So Easy

When providing the brain with a new body, the next step would be to deliver sensory stimulus. If the optic nerves are left intact, replacement retinas would provide vision. Balance and touch would also be a concern, among many other issues. Of course, this might be viable if the spinal cord remained attached. The creepy part would be to attach nerves. The list goes on. Basically, as of right now, science could create something which was greatly limited to thinking and seeing – not much more than that.

So, you’re thinking, this is it, this is how you keep the brain alive outside the body and this is how you live forever, right? Unfortunately, this works most effectively on slices of brain and not the whole. Scientists have managed to keep these specimens alive for only a few hours. Experiments on guinea pigs, with the olfactory system left attached, were more successful.

As for living forever, it cannot be done, not yet. Biology still hasn’t completely solved the aging issue. Yes, there has been some success in cell regeneration, but not enough. This will take some time and a large amount of patience. Technology is not mature enough to handle the demands of restoring the human brain to another body. I was hoping, in my lifetime, that I could see this happen. Maybe my grandchildren would have the chance to become immortal.

Now I’m thinking of Dr. Frankenstein again, and this keeps my dreams alive. 😉



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Sherrie is a freelance writer and artist with over 10 years of experience. She spends most of her time giving life to the renegade thoughts. As the words erupt and form new life, she knows that she is yet again free from the nagging persistence of her muse. She is a mother of three and a lifetime fan of the thought-provoking and questionable aspects of the universe.