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Neurons embodied in a virtual world: evidence for organoid ethics?


Kagan, BJ and Daniela, D and Stevens, I and Gilbert, F, Neurons embodied in a virtual world: evidence for organoid ethics?, AJOB Neuroscience, 13, (2) pp. 114-117. ISSN 2150-7740 (2022) [Non Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1080/21507740.2022.2048731


The development of neural organoids—three-dimensional constructs of neural tissue—resulted in significant advances in neurophysiological understandings, as well raising key ethical concerns. Sawai et al. (2022) discuss the use of these neural organoids, proposing policies to regulate this technology. The most pressing issue arises in the proposed metrics for assessing phenomenological consciousness and how they may be related to neural organoids. Secondary is their application of the precautionary principle. Our commentary seeks to position these points raised by Sawai et al. (2022) in the broader context of research, including recent evidence that lab-grown human brain cells are able to engage in enactive learning, while embodied in a virtual world through real-time closed-loop electrophysiological stimulation and recording (Kagan et al. 2021).

Item Details

Item Type:Non Refereed Article
Keywords:neural organoids, ethics, precautionary principle
Research Division:Philosophy and Religious Studies
Research Group:Applied ethics
Research Field:Ethical use of new technology
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Ethics
Objective Field:Technological ethics
UTAS Author:Stevens, I (Mr Ian Stevens)
UTAS Author:Gilbert, F (Associate Professor Frederic Gilbert)
ID Code:149327
Year Published:2022
Deposited By:Philosophy and Gender Studies
Deposited On:2022-03-25
Last Modified:2022-03-29

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