Mind Control Of Gene Expression In Mice

Wearing a wireless headset to monitor brainwaves, volunteers were able to control gene expression in mice fitted with a special implant.


(How does mind-controlled gene expression work?)

Fusseneggerís team describes a system that demonstrates the idea. In the report, volunteers are asked either to meditate or concentrate while wearing a headset that picks up their brainwaves. These brainwaves are beamed wirelessly to a receiving unit that works out the personís state of mind. This signal is then used to control an electromagnetic field generated by a platform that a mouse is sitting on.

Beforehand, the mouse was fitted with a small implant containing copper coils, a light-emitting diode (LED) and a tiny container of genetically modified cells. When the electromagnetic field switches on beneath the mouse, an electric current is induced in the implantís coils which makes the LED shine a beam of red light. This light illuminates the cells which are designed to respond by switching on a particular gene, causing the cells to make a new protein which seeps out of the implantís membrane.

In the tests, the new protein did not do anything important to the mice. But it allowed scientists to measure its levels rising and falling in the blood while people wearing the headset changed their state of mind.

Who would ever think of mind power altering the gene expression of other organisms? Robert Heinlein, that's who. In his 1941 classic Methuselah's Children, he describes a race of beings who could read the thoughts of visitors and then impose them on plants, producing specific flavors in food.

Several days after the last of them had been landed Lazarus was exploring alone some distance from the camp. He came across one of the Little People; the native greeted him with the same assumption of earlier acquaintance which all of them seemed to show and led Lazarus to a grove of low trees still farther from base. He indicated to Lazarus that he wanted him to eat. Lazarus was not particularly hungry but he felt compelled to humor such friendliness, so he plucked and ate.
He almost choked in his astonishment. Mashed potatoes and brown gravy!
". . . didn't we get it right? - . ." came an anxious thought.
"Bub," Lazarus said solemnly, "I don't know what you planned to do, but this is just fine!"
A warm burst of pleasure invaded his mind. ". . . try the next tree . .
Lazarus did so, with cautious eagerness. Fresh brown bread and sweet butter seemed to be the combination, though a dash of ice cream seemed to have crept in from somewhere. He was hardly surprised when the third tree gave strong evidence of having both mushrooms and charcoal-broiled steak in its ancestry.
(Read more about Heinlein's Mind Control Genetically Modified Food)

From Mind-controlled transgene expression by a wireless-powered optogenetic designer cell implant via

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/10/2014)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Biology ")

Worms Eat Plastic Now
'Slowly and inexorably, the rate of dissolution increased...' - Davis/Pedlar, 1971.

Mini-Brains In A Dish
'Cultured brains on a slab.' - Peter Watts, 1999.

NASA's Prototype Lunar Greenhouse For Mars And Moon
'In contrast to the airless desolation outside, the interior of this five-acre greenhouse was the one most desirable place to be.' - Raymond Z. Gallun, 1951.

Researchers Say 'Biohybrid Robot' - Clarke Said 'Biot'
'... The biological robots were not living creatures.' - Arthur C. Clarke, 1972.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

TALOS Exoskeleton Development Proceeding
'Suited up, you look like a big steel gorilla...'

Autonomous Robots Navigate Like Rats
'Out of warrens in the wall, tiny robot mice darted.'

SINTEF Robot Cleans Solar Panels
'The window cleaners, with large padded feet...'

Pangorin Restaurant Service Robots
What'll you have? Jawa juice?

Drug Creates Real Melanin Tan
I've used them all my life...

Medical Drones Hover Like Angels Near You
'The death-reversal equipment is on its way...'

SkEye Amazing Israeli Gigapixel Drone
'An eye that could not only see, but fly...'

How Rude! DARPA Wants Robots To Behave More Like Threepio
'Do I know protocol? Why, it's my primary function.'

'Liquid Light' Flows Around Corners
Light as a superfluid.

Unrolling The Filmy Materials Of Space Tech
'When unfolded and unrolled... it became a tough, gleaming film.'

Buddy Companion Robot Your Bulbous Friend
'Nanny was built in the shape of a sphere, a large metal sphere, flattened on the bottom...'

Poli-X1 Prototype Bee Pollinator
Is there anything drones can't do?

Bake in Space Bake-Off... In Space!
'A joyous condition commenced for the cook in the electric kitchen...'

DeepMind AI Baffled By Homer Simpson, Needs Human Help
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify straight off...'

Does Earth's Middle Mantle Hold Oceans Of Water?
Al Gore, you have no idea.

Vaccine Blocks Heroin High
'You're biochemically incapable of getting off...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.