• Question: Do you think engineering will ever be able to help repair our brains electrical connections?

    Asked by Anon on 21 Dec 2014.
    • Photo: Peter Green

      Peter Green answered on 21 Dec 2014:

      Very probably – the question is by when?

      Medicine and engineering are achieving some quite remarkable things, such as controlling robotic limbs using brain implants (see link below)


    • Photo: Andy Hearn

      Andy Hearn answered on 22 Dec 2014:

      I think this will happen one day too.

      People are still trying to “reverse-engineer” (like figuring out what the parts are from something already made) the human brain. It won’t be long before someone somewhere will make the next big discovery. That discovery will improve robotics too, so we’re in for exciting times!

    • Photo: Fiona Dickinson

      Fiona Dickinson answered on 6 Jan 2015:

      This one is going to take a combination of scientists and engineers and it will take a range of scientist to do it too.

      We really don’t have a great understanding of the brain still, but we are learning all of the time. Problems such as Altziemers seems to be caused by the shape certain important molecules called proteins take, by understanding this you can try to find a solution, but this will take years.

      Stem cells are remarkable and may well offer the key (stem cells are cells which haven’t yet decided what type of cell they want to be and so can be anything they want!)

      I do however think that we will (in my lifetime) get to the point that we can offer some repair to the brain’s electrical connections (and other problems with nerves such as paralysis) but it will take a huge team of people all putting together different skills and knowledge.