Scientists in the US have managed to keep a pig’s brain alive for 5 hours after it was separated from its body.
The researchers kept the pig brain alive with a machine they developed at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.
The smart pump used in the machine ensures normal blood flow to the brain placed in the device.
The special pump can adjust the pressure, temperature and oxygen level of the blood down to the finest detail thanks to a special algorithm.
In the study, the machine was used on domestic pigs, whose Latin name is sus scrofa domesticus.
The pig brain, which was separated from its body, was kept alive for up to 5 hours thanks to the pump and algorithm without any serious changes in its structure.
Juan Pascual, lead author of the study published in the scientific journal Scientific Reports, said this new method “will pave the way for research that focuses on the brain independently of the body.”
Pascual said the machine would make it possible to understand how certain areas of the brain work independently of the body’s influence.
In the study, scientists were also able to manipulate the pigs’ blood sugar levels through algorithms and machines. Pascual emphasized that this is important for better studying the impact of blood sugar on brain functioning.
Scientists have also received a patent to use the machine in cardiopulmonary bypass procedures. In this bypass technique, the heart and lung are kept alive during heart surgery by connecting them to a machine.
In a US study in 2019, the brain cells of pigs were partially revived a few hours after death.