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Zombie Pigs First, Hibernating Soldiers Next 193

ColdWetDog writes "Wired is running a story on DARPA's effort to stave off battlefield casualties by turning injured soldiers into zombies by injecting them with a cocktail of one chemical or another (details to be announced). From the article, 'Dr. Fossum predicts that each soldier will carry a syringe into combat zones or remote areas, and medic teams will be equipped with several. A single injection will minimize metabolic needs, de-animating injured troops by shutting down brain and heart function. Once treatment can be carried out, they'll be "re-animated" and — hopefully — as good as new.' If it doesn't pan out we can at least get zombie bacon and spam."


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Zombie Pigs First, Hibernating Soldiers Next

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  • Damage Mechanism (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Renraku ( 518261 ) on Monday December 07, 2009 @07:18PM (#30359210) Homepage

    One of the main mechanisms for brain damage after injury to the brain is due to the neurons releasing their packets of neurotransmitters upon their death. So you have a good neuron right next to a big blob of toxic neurotransmitters. Then that neuron dies, too. It's a chemical cascade of dying neurons. Slowing down metabolism slows down this damage, as oxidation plays a large part. Ever see those people that drown in icy water, only to be revived after hours without oxygen, somewhat intact? Same thing.

  • by Labcoat Samurai ( 1517479 ) on Monday December 07, 2009 @07:20PM (#30359242)
    The terminology seems odd here. Isn't suspended animation pretty much the opposite of being a zombie? I mean zombies are the animated dead. Suspended animation makes you the unanimated living.
  • well i knew it.... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by jisou ( 1483699 ) on Monday December 07, 2009 @08:15PM (#30359764) Journal
    darpa is defiantly going to be the government organization to incite the zombie apocalypse. though i shouldn't say that to loud considering the made the internet.....
  • Re:Brain damage? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by electrons_are_brave ( 1344423 ) on Monday December 07, 2009 @11:59PM (#30361482)
    Ever since I studied neuropsychlogy and we had people with TBIs being brought in each week I have developed a similar viewpoint.

    Medical technology gets to the point where it can save lives, but many of these lives end up not worth living.

  • by Xest ( 935314 ) on Tuesday December 08, 2009 @06:02AM (#30363240)

    "Really, this is how I see medicine in the future."

    Yes, unfortunately it's also what I see as the cause of the 22nd century's major problem just as ours is climate change. Their problem will be massive overpopulation, how do you deal with a population that doesn't die but keeps increasing when the resources of the planet they live on can't sustain their population even right now, let alone then?

    The only options are to either let people die, stop new people being born, or move to other planets. I'm not convinced in a hundred years we'll have the technology to get to other inhabitable planets and, well, inhabit them. If this is indeed the case it'll be a decision between preventing new births or enforcing maximum life spans to achieve the former options.

    The ability to keep people alive indefinitely and recover people from even the most horrific incidents may well be the next atomic bomb- a technology that we may find that we would often perhaps like to be able to undiscover.

    Does anyone else have any ideas how we might go about solving the population problem should we obtain the ability to keep people alive much longer and fight back death? A solution that can realistically be achieved in at most, the next 91 years.

  • by mrsquid0 ( 1335303 ) on Tuesday December 08, 2009 @06:26AM (#30363304) Homepage

    I would like to see this technique tweaked and used as a method of hibernation to stave off boredome and conserve supplies when there is nothing good on tv.

  • by ElizabethGreene ( 1185405 ) on Tuesday December 08, 2009 @12:18PM (#30366430)

    Sit through just _one_ corporate meeting and you will quickly realize that for a given cluster of human brains,

    IQ = 2/(brains ^(blackberries+iphones+1)) * average IQ.


    (Yes I realize that the parentheses around the denominator are redundant. They are for clarity.)

The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford