Sergio Canavero, a doctor at the Turin Advanced Neuromodulation Group, just published a paper looking at some recent developments in spinal cord fusion and suggesting that this means human head transplants are on their way. He puts forth a theoretical procedure that he says could enable these transplants. It involves a super-sharp cut right through the spinal column followed by mechanical fusion of the donor and recipient, held together with plastics like polyethylene glycol (PEG). He theorizes that the clean cut and tight fusion could allow the body to naturally repair the severed nerves. …

Head transplants have been done before, most famously with rhesus monkeys in a 1970 procedure. But joining up a pair of central nervous systems proved too difficult to crack; in the case of the rhesus monkeys, many organs became functional, but the animals were paralyzed from the neck down due to an inability to properly connect the spine.