Sergio Canavero, an Italian doctor, is asking foreign billionaires to fund his attempt to transplant a patient's head onto a donor's body (video below).
In a video published by RIA Novosti, Canavero told Valery Spiridonov, his Russian head transplant patient, about Ren Xiaoping, who performed a head transplant surgery on a monkey in China that kept the animal alive for 20 hours, RT.com reports.
New Scientist notes Canavero's statement but reports that it was "unable to obtain further details on this experiment."
Canavero showed a brief video of a mouse that allegedly had its head cut from its spinal cord and then had it re-attached.
C-Yoon Kim, of the Konkuk University School of Medicine in South Korea, and his team reportedly performed the procedure.
Kim told the New Scientist that motor function recovery in the forelimbs and hindlimbs of the mice was possible.
“Therefore I guess it is possible to reconnect the [spinal] cord after complete severance," Kim added.
Canavero also said that a successful human head transplant had occurred in China "under the leadership of Xiaoping" but did not show any pictures of this alleged history-making event because the images are "too strong."
Canavero’s theory for a head transplant rests on using polyethylene glycol (PEG), a glue-type substance that is often used as a laxative, to glue a severed spinal cord together.
Spiridonov has a muscle-wasting condition but is hopeful that a head transplant could give him a longer life.
Canaveral concluded the video with a financial plea to fund the head transplant surgery:
So, I’m asking today, Russian billionaires and also foreign billionaires like Mark Zuckerberg. Mark Zuckerberg is already sponsoring much of this life extension research, and this is certainly about extending life, to finance, to bankroll the first head transplant in Russia on Valery Spiridonov.
So, today I come to you, we come to you, since now this is a huge crew. And we prove that what we said is for real, it can be done, but to save Valery Spiridonov, we need Russia to help us. So, today we are asking for Russia's help.
Sources: RT.com, New Scientist / Photo Credit: Valeriy Spiridonov & Sergio Canaveral via RIA Novosti/YouTube Screenshot