What was the reason for these scientist to perform experiments like these ones. In first part we were talking about some pretty sick stuff. Scientist who was researching asphyxiation by hanging himself, still sounds bizarre and it makes me wonder if this was his masochistic outage or a really important research. Than there was a story of veterinary who experimented with possible mixture of human and primate gens. Thanks to God that didn’t work out. But that was just an introduction into the real madness.
1. Facial expressions while decapitating a rat
Experiment designed to study whether emotions evoke characteristic facial expressions was performed in Minnesota 1924, by Carney Landis, graduate student in psychology at the University of Minnesota. The study was to determinate is there the same reaction and facial expression common to all the subjects to display shock or disgust.
Most of Landis’s subjects were fellow graduate students. He brought them into his lab and painted lines on their faces so that he could more easily see the movement of their muscles. He then exposed them to a variety of stimuli designed to provoke a strong psychological reaction. As they reacted, he snapped pictures of their faces. He made them smell ammonia, look at pornographic pictures, and reach their hand into a bucket containing slimy frogs. But the climax of the experiment arrived when he carried out a live white rat on a tray and asked them to decapitate it.
It turns out that people use a wide variety of expressions to convey the same emotion. There is no unique reaction to one same thing. No man reacts the same.
2. The Vomit-Drinking Doctor
When someone is determinate to prove his theory, he will go really far to show he is right. Stubbins Ffirth, a doctor-in-training, noticed that the yellow fever ran riot during the summer, but disappeared during the winter. This lead him to thinking that this is not a contagious disease. He theorized it was caused by an excess of stimulants such as heat, food, and noise.
To prove his theory, Ffirth exposed himself to yellow fever, but no matter how much he was exposed he wouldn’t catch it. He started by making small incisions on his arms and pouring “fresh black vomit” obtained from a yellow-fever patient into the cuts. He didn’t get sick. Finally he took to drinking entire glasses of pure, undiluted black vomit. And still he didn’t get sick.
Healthy as ever, he seemed to have proven his theory. Unfortunately, he was wrong. Yellow fever is very contagious, but it requires direct transmission into the blood stream, usually by a mosquito, to cause infection. But considering all Ffirth did to infect himself, it is a bit of a miracle he remained alive.
3. Elephants on Acid
Who would like to see an elephant on LSD? I guess this idea is a smart one only to ones who are already on LSD. On August 3, 1962, a group of Oklahoma City researchers decided to find out what will happen.
To cut a long story short, what happened is next. They gave to poor animal 297 milligrams of LSD. 297 milligrams is a lot of LSD — about 3000 times the level of a typical human dose. In fact, it remains the largest dose of LSD ever given to a living creature. Tusko (the elephant) reacted to the shot as if a bee had stung him. He trumpeted around his pen for a few minutes, and then keeled over on his side. Horrified, the researchers tried to revive him, but about an hour later he was dead. The three scientists sheepishly concluded that, “It appears that the elephant is highly sensitive to the effects of LSD.”
The experiment was performed by Warren Thomas, Director of the City Zoo. Known as elephant killer!
4. Seeing Through Cat’s Eyes
In 1999 researchers led by Dr. Yang Dan, an assistant professor of neurobiology at the University of California, Berkeley, anesthetized a cat and than chemically paralyzed it and secured it tightly in a surgical frame. They then glued metal posts to the whites of its eyes, and forced it to look a screen that showed scene after scene of swaying trees and turtleneck-wearing men.
As the cat watched the images of the trees and the turtleneck-wearing guy, the same images emerged (slightly blurrier) on the computer screen across the room. The commercial potential of the technology is mind-boggling. How about this — never carry a camera again. Take pictures by blinking your eyes. It would work great unless you had a few too many drinks on vacation.
5. Heartbeat At Death
The prison physician, Dr. Stephen Besley, wanted to explore heartbeat of people sentenced to death. John Deering had volunteered to participate in an experiment, the first of its kind, to have his heartbeat recorded as he was shot through the chest by a firing squad.
On October 31, 1938, John Deering took a last drag on his cigarette, sat down in a chair, and allowed a prison guard to place a black hood over his head and pin a target to his chest. Next the guard attached electronic sensors to Deering’s wrists.
Since he was recording his heartbeat just before John died, the only thing he found out form this experiment is that John Deering was afraid of dieing.