People who suffer from a severe traumatic brain injury can sometimes end up being classified as being brain dead. This term means that biological functions have stopped; however, electrical activities might still occur. Those electrical activities include the ability to grow, digest foods, circulate blood, gestate a baby, excrete waste, and other similar functions. Even when that occurs, a person can still be considered brain dead because the functions that do remain aren’t enough to actually sustain life without intervention.
A new study was recently approved that will enable biotech companies to explore the possibility of regenerating the brains of people who have been classified as braindead. The two biotech companies will try to determine if it is possible to bring parts of the central nervous system back to life. All told, the two companies will recruit 20 patients to participate in the study.
All of the participants will have to be certified as brain dead. They will be kept alive via life support for several months as the study is being conducted. The participants will be given amino acids, stem cells, and other treatments to determine how the participants react.
Brain imaging will be used over the course of several months to determine if there is regeneration occurring. One particular area of interest is the brain stem’s lowest region, which controls the heartbeat and breathing.
While there is no guarantee that this study will be successful, it does show that progress is being made toward helping people with the most serious TBIs. For the family members of those who have suffered a severe TBI, affording the treatments necessary can be difficult. Seeking compensation can help to cover the treatments necessary.
Source: Medical Xpress, “U.S. biotech companies will attempt to regenerate the brains of dead people,” May 06, 2016