Mop-haired scientist, Professor Brian Cox, is set to become the first person in the UK to be fitted with a cerebral band. The band, similar to a gastric band but placed around the brain, can restrict mental capacity by up to 47 per cent. The breakthrough will cure the serious medical condition, known as ‘too clever by half syndrome’, doctors claim.
Cox, Professor of Big Sums and Bright Things in the Sky at Manchester University, flashed his trademark boyish grin and explained why he’s agreed to undergo the pioneering surgery.
‘My brain was bloated and overstuffed and my daily intake of information was reaching ridiculous levels. I was bingeing on a high-brow diet of particle physics and Higgs bosons. I tried limiting my intake myself. For six weeks, I watched only Jeremy Kyle and Snog, Marry, Avoid on TV, and read the Daily Star. But then my self-control snapped. Before I knew it, I was back to gorging on Only Connect, old series of Horizon – when it was good – and New Scientist. Now I’ve put back on all the weighty knowledge I had before – and then some. I'm a martyr to yoyo learning.’
Dr. Francis Quirk of the medical team at University College Hospital, Winnersh, who developed the brain band, explained the procedure: ‘An adjustable band will be placed around Professor Cox’s cerebral cortex, gradually reducing the size of his useable brain, while still giving him the sensation of being fully mentally satisfied. We can adjust his brainpower as far as he chooses, right down to the level of a contestant on Super Casino.’
The treatment may also be effective against the widespread ‘nobody’s likes a know-all’ virus. Sufferers are prone to prolonged periods of general resentment and chronic episodes of public dislike. Carol Vorderman and Stephen Fry are among the brainy celebs rumoured to have expressed an interest in the surgery.
The brain band, however, is not without its critics. Doctor Stephen Marchmain of Colchester NHS Trust issued stern words of warning. ‘In the wrong hands, this procedure could be highly dangerous. Think of the consequences if, say, a cast member of TOWIE, Peter Andre or Paris Hilton were to go in for it – in the mistaken view that it’s this month’s must-have surgery. Any reduction in brain capacity for the likes of them would be an absolute disaster.’