Can We Cure Disease by Shocking the Nervous System?

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Painkillers, steroids and other drugs are often effective, but they can be expensive, hard to administer and accompanied by lethal side effects. Medical professionals and some investors say the entire drug industry may some day be replaced by what's called bioelectronics. This sort of electroshock therapy is a way to get the nervous system to communicate with the immune system — in effect, telling the body to heal itself. It's a promising new industry described in this Sunday's New York Times magazine by author Michael Behar.