A groundbreaking trial to see if it is possible to regenerate the brains of dead people has won approval from health watchdogs.
A biotech company in the US has been granted ethical permission to recruit 20 patients who have been declared clinically dead from a traumatic brain injury to test whether parts of their central nervous systems can be brought back to life.
Scientists will use a combination of therapies as well as deploying lasers and nerve stimulation techniques that have been shown to bring patients out of comas.
The participants will have been certified dead and only kept alive through life support. They will be monitored for several months using brain imaging equipment to look for signs of regeneration, particularly in the upper spinal cord.
The team believes that the brain stem cells might be able to erase their history and restart life, based on their surrounding tissue – a process seen in the animal kingdom in creatures like salamanders, which can regrow entire limbs.
Ira Pastor, chief executive of Bioquark Inc said: “This represents the first trial of its kind and another step towards the eventual reversal of death in our lifetime. We hope to see results within the first two to three months.”