Google+
Close

Human Exceptionalism

Life and dignity with Wesley J. Smith.

Researchers Manipulate Rats’ Dreams



Text  



Good grief, what next?  Researchers claim they have been able to change the dreams of rats.  From the Daily Mail story:
Using correlative analysis, they confirmed the  rats were dreaming about the previous day's exploits in the enclosure but when  researchers played the audio cues from the experiment, they found the rats' dreams would change. They were now dreaming about the section of the  maze associated with that signal. This proved that the contents of their dreams  could be modified by an outside party re-activating certain memories while they  were asleep. Wilson told the website that this 'dream  engineering' opens the door to more invasive control of memory processing during  sleep. He said it even opened up the possibility of certain memories being enhanced, changed or even blocked from our  minds.
Once could see a therapeutic benefit for those suffering from intractable nightmares.  One could even see such manipulations sold as a form of recreational experience. But like much of modern biotechnology, it also opens some very worrisome cans of worms.  Does this mean we will have to have laws protecting the freedom to dream without outside interference?


Text  


Subscribe to National Review