Illustration for article titled Neurologist wants the brain of Donald Trump, and other unique minds

Neurologist Jacopo Annese's brain donors already include a woman who played one of the flying monkeys in The Wizard of Oz, and a woman who can't feel fear. But he wants the brain of Donald Trump as well.


Top image via David Deriso.

Bloomberg has a great profile of Annese with the UCSD Brain Observatory, who's collecting the brains of unique people, so he can slice them up and see what makes them different — but first, he wants to know everything about their lives. So he's doing extensive, detailed interviews with the still-living subjects, who have agreed to have their brains dissected after they die. He tells Bloomberg:

The ideal is "someone with an interesting life, a politician or businessman whose biography has already been written," he said in a telephone interview. "We want to write the last few chapters of their biography in neurological terms. We should go after Donald Trump, really; that's a lot of work saved up front for us."


Besides being one of the flying monkeys of Oz, Bette Ferguson was born on a World War I troop ship as it sailed back to the U.S., and she was married five times, and still has vivid memories of all of it. (Well, not being born on a troop ship — but all the other stuff.)

Annese's lab was built around the donated brain of Henry Molaison, the famous patient who couldn't remember beyond 20 seconds while he was alive. [Bloomberg]

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