Israeli Scientists Developing Cyborg Rats

It is said that the world will rush to the door of the man with a better mouse trap, but what about a better mouse? A rat lies motionless on a sterile, spotless table. Israel’s Tel Aviv University psychology department is close to developing a cyborg rat — a leap ahead of those mad Swiss scientists. Where the Swiss are developing a more muscular mouse, the Israelis are going for the cyborg rat. I’ll put my money on the Israelis in the upcoming enhanced rodent wars.


The Israeli scientists are attempting to replace part of a rat’s brain with digital equipment — vivisection experiments that have produced protests from animal rights activists.

The hope is that an implant could combat such diseases as Parkinson’s disease or stroke victims by replacing damaged brain with microchips. How do you feel about the use of animals for such research in this way?

Of course, Sarah Connorstein in Tel Aviv may want to be a bit careful opening her door.

Source: BBC

17 thoughts on “Israeli Scientists Developing Cyborg Rats”

  1. Carol, yours is an amazing example of the benefit of medical experimentation as well as the dilemma people are left with when considering the advances medical science has brought, and promises to bring in the future. Thank you for sharing your experience regarding this issue.

  2. I am new to this blog. I am a blog dog. I can read, write, type (well, sort of I have small paws and big keys) and relate to the humanoids. This animal research thing is a bit of an issue with me. I was in the Western White House under Bushie down in Texas and heard about such things going on in some NSA laboratory. My NSA lab taught me things too. Just because they are rats does not mean that they dont have feelings.

  3. At first glance i thght the article would be about creating cyborg rats, for what purpose not sure, maybe spying, except most people would want to kill a rat; so how long would they be useful?
    As for pain in the brain. I have a computer chip in my brain, (a sensory cortical stimulator implant – for facial and eye pain). It does not hurt, now, but when they put it in they had to trigger the correct area to correspond to the pain. This was done by waking me from anaesthesia, repeatedly, & asking if i felt the pain. Oh, yes. I did, it was torturous. So, does it hurt them, depends on where they put it, what they are doing, and if they are completely anaesthetized.
    It is vivisection. Even though I am one who has greatly benefitted from this kind of research, (in the case of my kind of implant, they used cats), and I know others who can now work, even a child with c. p. who was unable to walk and now runs because of her implanted stimulator, I have great doubts about the morality of it. Would I give up my implant? No way. Would I have preferred they never did the research; either at all or in the way they did it, on live animals? I have often debated with myself and others about it. My selfishness says do whatever you have to do to help me (and others). My sense of decency, integrity, and humanity says there must be another way.

  4. Are we sure that these experiments on the rats is really motivated by military uses? I don’t trust the Israelis. I think they are building a rat army to attack the cats in Iran!

  5. The debate over personhood is getting closer and closer to actual importance.

    As for experimenting on animals … I tend to go the karma route …

  6. More OT news: Santorum won the Iowa caucus, 8 precincts votes won’t be counted due to irregularities and the GOP has decided to NOT call a winner in Iowa. Boy, the bloom should be off the rose for teabaggers regarding the GOP.

    “Iowa Caucus Results: Rick Santorum Ahead Of Mitt Romney”

    “COLUMBIA, S.C.–Rick Santorum edged Mitt Romney by 34 votes in a surprise flip to the final tally of the Iowa caucuses, but no winner will be declared because some votes remain missing in the event’s closest finish ever, Republican officials said Thursday.”

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/19/iowa-caucus-results-certified-rick-santorum_n_1215099.html
    —————
    Good breakdown on the actual results and problems:

    http://caucuses.desmoinesregister.com/2012/01/19/register-exclusive-2012-gop-caucus-count-unresolved/

  7. Good morning, Bud. (One of the comments to the story: “Obviously the spy who came in from the quarry…” )

  8. Rats are already cyborg, as are hominids.

    It all turns on the meaning of machine, which is as challenging as the definition of plant and animal.

    At least down where the twilight of knowledge wafts around between black and white:

    “Our cells, and the cells of all organisms, are composed of molecular machines. These machines are built of component parts, each of which contributes a partial function or structural element to the machine. How such sophisticated, multi-component machines could evolve has been somewhat mysterious, and highly controversial.” Professor Lithgow said.

    (Are Toxins of Power Machines or Organisms?). All the Isrealis are doing is the exercise made well-known by the series “The Bionic Man” and the later “The Bionic Woman”.

    Hence … “The Bionic Rat” …

  9. anon nurse

    Good link there….

    UMMM, so was this spy rock spying on other rocks,
    that Putin deemed spy worthy??? LOL

  10. “How do you feel about the use of animals for such research in this way?”

    I think if the researchers treat the animals ethically, with care, and attempt to do their research is as painfree a manner as possible, and if other researchers agree their work holds promise and is not some lark, then I know there is a great deal of human suffering, and suffering even in other creatures, that this could relieve.

    (There is a good chance that working on a brain is a painless procedure once the implants are in. Is that right?)

    If the animals are treated humanely, if the research proceeds along ethical and valid grounds, then I see this as not much more evil than killing the animal for food, or for clothing, or just because we dislike rats or other pests.

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