Clinical trial to implant chip in overweight people’s brains to zap them when they think about food
It sounds like an extreme way to lose weight. Six morbidly obese people have signed up to be part of a clinical trial that will implant a chip in their brains and zap them when they think about food.
According to the publication, Elemental, the chip, known as a responsive neurostimulation system (RNS,) was developed by the medical technology company Neuropace.
It was originally developed to treat people with epilepsy.
Once the chip is implanted, it records the brain’s activity constantly and will shock the patient when it detects a pattern of activity showing the precursor signs of a seizure.
According to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers recently tried this same technique to stop mice from binge-eating. Scientists with Standford University now want to find out if this approach will work with humans who suffer from ‘loss-of-control eating.’
The trial will involve 6 participants who have a body mass index of over 45.
The study will take place over 5 years and will examine participants for 18 months at a time.