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Belgians implant RFID chip in tooth

Absolutely dental

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Belgian scientists at the Catholic University of Leuven have embedded an RFID chip into a tooth to show how detailed personal information can be stored.

Patrick Thevissen and his team adapted a tag which vets already implant into animals. If you lose your chipped dog, vets can retrieve the pet's home address from the device.

In the case of humans, however, the intention of the ID tag is to allow forensic teams to retrieve a person's name, nationality, date of birth and gender allowing identification after, say, a natural disaster.

Experiments show that the tags withstand temperature changes of up to 450 °C - so they're pretty well vindaloo-proof - but repeated expansion and contraction of the tooth is still a problem, requiring the use of an insulating layer.

However, Dr Thevissen believes teeth are - as the strongest and longest-lived parts of the body - the best place to store information. ®

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