30-Second Brain: The 50 Most Mindblowing Ideas in Neuroscience, Each Explained in Half a Minute
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Are we all at the mercy of our brain chemistry? Do you think that the amygdala and the hippocampus are fantastical sea monsters? What can an MRI scan tell us? Could you explain to dinner-party guests why we don't giggle when we tickle ourselves? 30-Second Brain is here to fill your mind with the science of exactly what's happening inside your head. Using no more than two pages, 300 words and an illustration, this is the quickest way to understand the wiring and function of the most complex and intricate mechanism in the human body. Discover how the networks of 90 billion nerve cells work together to produce perception, action, cognition and emotion. Explore how your brain defines your personality, and what it gets up to while you are asleep.Illustrated with mind-bending graphics and supported by biographies of pioneers in the field of neuroscience, it's the book to get your grey matter thinking about your grey matter.
Laboratory of Primate Biology. Hebb’s work spanned neurophysiology and psychology. His overriding interest was in the link between brain and mind – how neurons behave and arrange themselves to produce what we perceive as thoughts, feelings, memories, and emotions. He came at the conundrum from all directions. He studied sensory deprivation, brain damage, the effects of brain surgery, behaviour, experience, environment, stimulation and heredity, as well as the major theories in psychology of the
changed direction again, moved to the Salk Institute for Biological Research in La Jolla, California, taught himself neuroanatomy and focused his attention on theoretical neuroscience. In 1982, working with Graeme Mitchison, he produced a paper on possible functions of REM sleep and then from the early 1990s focused his talents squarely on re-establishing the investigation of consciousness at the heart of neuroscience. Crick had been struck by the reluctance of neuroscientists to tackle this
brain. There is a part of the brain – ’area V4’ – present in both hemispheres, that is responsible for the perception of colour. Damage to this region of the brain creates the experience of seeing the world in black and white. Why would there be a dedicated region of the brain for processing colour? The V4 region of the brain is thought to compute ‘colour constancy’ – that is, it infers the colour of a surface taking into account the lighting conditions. This ability may have evolved in our
Neurotransmitters convey signals between neurons, briefly exciting or inhibiting their electrical activity. They are released when nerve impulses arrive at synapses. They range from very small molecules, to medium compounds, to giant molecules called peptides. They are stored in tiny spheres called synaptic vesicles. Impulses cause the vesicles to release their contents into the synaptic gap between transmitting and receiving neurons. Released neurotransmitters act by binding to receptor
junctions between neurons, linking the axon of one to a dendrite of another. Synapses ensure that neurons are physically separate from each other so that the brain is not one continuous mesh. Communication across synapses can happen either chemically via neurotransmitters, or electrically. synchrony Applied to neuroscience, synchrony describes the correlated activity of individual neurons. Neurons in synchrony fire spikes (action potentials) at the same time, which can increase their impact on