By Science Daily
What happens in the moments just before death is widely believed to be a slowdown of the body’s systems as the heart stops beating and blood flow ends.
But a new laboratory study by the University of Michigan Medical School reveals a storm of brain activity that erupts as the heart deteriorates that may play a surprising destabilizing role in heart function.
This near-death brain signaling may be targeted to help cardiac arrest patients survive. Most of the more than 400,000 Americans who experience cardiac arrest die without immediate help.
“Despite the loss of consciousness and absence of signs of life, internally the brain exhibits sustained, organized activity and increased communication with the heart, which one may guess is an effort to save the heart,” says senior study author Jimo Borjigin, Ph.D., associate professor of neurology and associate professor of molecular and integrative physiology.
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