transcranial magnetic stimulation
Ominously-named Israeli tech company Brainsway has just gotten clearance from the FDA to sell its depression-treating helmet in the United States. Billed as an alternative to mood-altering pharmaceuticals, Brainsway's technology sends brief magnetic pulses into the brain in the hopes of rewiring connections between brain cells and essentially clearing up the lines of communication between them.
New research from Estonian scientists Inga Karton and Talis Bachmann shows that lying can be somewhat impeded by magnetic fields applied to specific areas of the brain. As crazy as that sounds, it is built upon previous work that showed that part of the brain acts as a moral compass and can be influenced by magnetic fields. So, first with the caveats: In their research, participants subjected to the magnetic fields could still lie, they were just less likely to do so in a spontaneous situation. In the experiment, 16 subjects were shown colored discs and told that they could either lie or tell the truth about what color they saw. The researchers then applied transcranial magnetic stimulation to the left or right dorsolateral prefrontal cortexes and observed the results. They found that the magnetic stimulation seemed to sway the response of the participants toward more truth-telling or lying.