Are children who are born without a cerebral cortex conscious?

By Anna-Karin Margareta Andersson The article highlights an important but surprisingly neglected medical ethical topic: new research suggests that children born without a cerebral cortex are conscious. What types of care should they be provided in order to respect their human rights? This topic caught my attention thanks to Professor Alan Shewmon and colleagues’ pivotal […]

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Revisiting the lessons of Frankenstein

By Julian Koplin & John Massie The story of Frankenstein came to Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley in a nightmare. It was a miserable, wet summer in 1816, and Mary Shelley was visiting the poet Lord Byron with her sister, Claire Clairmont, and her soon-to-be husband, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. They spend much of the summer […]

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The errant ways we talk about brain death

By Jordan Potter and Jason Lesandrini On November 4, 2019, newspapers across the USA reported on the tragic and untimely death of Mr. Nebane Abienwi – a 37-year-old asylum-seeking migrant from Cameroon who died in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after suffering a brain hemorrhage. Per an ICE report, physicians at Sharp […]

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Guest Post: Sentient Brains in a Dish? Potential Glimpses of Sentience Will Be Detectable in Future Cerebral Organoids

Authors, Andrea Lavazza *, Marcello Massimini ** (*Centro Universitario Internazionale, Arezzo, Italy; **Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences “Luigi Sacco”, University of Milan, Italy; Fondazione Don Carlo Gnocchi, Milan, Italy). Paper: Cerebral organoids: ethical issues and consciousness assessment (http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/medethics-2017-104555) Can we grow a sentient human organism in a dish? The answer may depend on how we evaluate […]

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