What if you could control somebody's desires using a wireless device? It's not a Larry Niven novel — it's today's science. Researchers used a remote controller to stimulate neurons in mice that release the reward chemical dopamine. As a result, they changed the behavior of the mice, from a distance, in the absence of any tangible reward.
And they did it using optogenetics, an emerging field of research in which living, cortical neurons and other cells can be manipulated or controlled with optical technology (typically with fiber optic cables). It’s only been tested in nonhuman animals like rodents and monkeys, but it could eventually be used to treat such things as heart conditions, paralysis, and even diabetes.