A post here last week --"Mice given human brain cells become smarter" linked to a piece in Discover Magazine.
Here's a more extended account of what seems to be the same research. (I say probably, as it is not clear from the Discover item where the work took place.)
In the work reported in the IEET (Institute for Ethtics and Emerging Technologies), written by George Dworsky Dworsky IEET report, he writes,
"To conduct the experiment, the scientists created human chimeric mice — mice that were endowed with human glial cells."
("Chimera" --there's that word again, one we're going to be hearing much more of as science moves on. A chimera, in this context, is a blend of human with animals of some kind or another, to date mostly chimps and mice.)
"We did this by using a narrow glass micropipette to inject 100,000 human glial progenitor cells into each hemisphere of the developing mouse forebrain," said Goldman. This resulted in the widespread integration of human glia into their brain. Once the mice reached adulthood, a large proportion of their forebrain glia were essentially human.
May I intervene here to (modestly) point out that much the same was done by the fictional neurosurgeon/researcher in my technothriller A REMEDY FOR DEATH in his work with Chimp Donnie?
Back to IEET:
"To mitigate any ethical concerns, Goldman told io9 that the grafts were delivered into postnatal animals, they were of cells that could not be transmitted to offspring, and they did not involve neuronal replacement."
In other words, they made sure that (a) these "ensmartened" mice weren't going to pass on to their babies, and (b) the implanted human cells were not from an aborted fetus, but rather "from human skin cells reprogrammed into induced pluripotential cells."
Which implies that human skin cells can be reprogrammed into brain cells. Hmm, does that mean that when you, as the saying goes, "put your foot in your mouth" you are ultimately adding foot cells to augment the brain-power you just failed to demonstrate by what you said? I wonder.