First human head transplant scheduled for December 2017

Earlier this year, we heard about the head transplanting ambitions of Dr. Sergio Canavero, an Italian doctor who sought a volunteer for his procedure called HEAVEN. In April he found that volunteer, a Russian man named Valery Spiridonov, and now we have a timeframe for when he is expected to go under the knife — December 2017. The surgery is estimated to take a full 36 or so hours to complete.

The head transplant surgery has spurred talk of ethics and plausibility since it first caught widespread attention earlier this year. Canavero has talked about the plan at length, including detailing some of the ways it will be accomplished. One step will involve cooling the donor's head and the body on the receiving end.

Spiridonov is 30 years old, and he has the genetic muscle wasting disease Werdnig-Hoffmann. Despite the ample risks associated with this never-before-done procedure, he volunteered and, we hope, will be the first person to live life with a fully donated body.

In a statement to CEN, Spiridonov said: "When I realized that I could participate in something really big and important, I had no doubt left in my mind and started to work in this direction. The only thing I feel is the sense of pleasant impatience, like I have been preparing for something important all my life and it is starting to happen."

SOURCE: Discovery News