April 13, 2004
SOME GOOD NEWS ON THE SCIENTIFIC AND MEDICAL FRONT: Here's one bit:
The company, Cyberkinetics Inc., plans to implant a tiny chip in the brains of five paralyzed people in an effort to enable them to operate a computer by thought alone.
The Food and Drug Administration has given approval for a clinical trial of the implants, according to the company.
The implants, part of what Cyberkinetics calls its BrainGate system, could eventually help people with spinal cord injuries, strokes, Lou Gehrig's disease or other ailments to communicate better or even to operate lights and other devices through a kind of neural remote control.
And here's another:
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) -- A dwarf mouse named Yoda has celebrated his fourth birthday, making him the oldest of his kind and far beyond 100 in human years, the University of Michigan Medical School says.
Yoda owes his longevity to genetic modifications that affected his pituitary and thyroid glands and reduced insulin production -- and which left him a third smaller than an average mouse and very sensitive to cold.
On the other hand, at the human equivalent of about 136 years, Yoda is still mobile, sexually active and ``looking good,'' said Dr. Richard A. Miller, associate director of research at the school's geriatrics center.
Keep working, guys.