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General => Science => Topic started by: Claireliontamer on July 12, 2017, 08:18:49 PM

Title: All things brain...
Post by: Claireliontamer on July 12, 2017, 08:18:49 PM
After the conversation about attention on the 'What's on your mind thread?' this popped up in my YouTube feed.



I thought it would be more useful to start a brain thread rather than trying to find the original discussion.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on July 12, 2017, 08:41:58 PM
Interesting distinction with "Covert Attention". That must be on steroids for me. I pick up every conversation in a noisy place without even trying.

Not sure how you can make the same distinction with computers, though. They're either paying attention, or not paying attention. Maybe something quantum computing can tackle...
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 13, 2017, 02:41:40 AM
Awesome! :grin:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 13, 2017, 02:48:29 AM
Just to leave to this here:

http://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=724.msg354756#msg354756 (http://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=724.msg354756#msg354756)

(discussion on creativity and attention from the What's on your mind thread. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Claireliontamer on July 13, 2017, 12:08:04 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on July 13, 2017, 02:48:29 AM
Just to leave to this here:

http://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=724.msg354756#msg354756 (http://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=724.msg354756#msg354756)

(discussion on creativity and attention from the What's on your mind thread.

Thank you, I couldn't face trawling through the threads!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 15, 2017, 02:07:30 AM


Came across this short video on Youtube on the debunking of certain "neuromyths", as she calls them.

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Claireliontamer on July 18, 2017, 10:15:02 PM


Another new Ted talk on the brain.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on July 21, 2017, 03:48:35 AM
Thanks for sharing that hallucination with me, Claire ;-)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 21, 2017, 01:15:25 PM
I haven't watched this yet, but it's with the same guy:

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on July 21, 2017, 04:49:51 PM
Quote from: Claireliontamer on July 18, 2017, 10:15:02 PM


Another new Ted talk on the brain.

I liked that one where he talks about the methods of prediction go "wrong" and you get visual hallucinations that other's do not see. I get that because of when I went through psychosis, that is exactly how it appeared. The "predictions" I had were not the same as other's in more ways than one.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 25, 2017, 09:07:32 PM
The topic of 'left vs. right' came up in Hermes' Puzzle thread, so I thought I'd leave this TED-ed video here (came out just yesterday).

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on July 26, 2017, 12:54:34 AM
The fact that still has to be talked about flips my shit
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: hermes2015 on July 26, 2017, 05:19:19 AM
Thanks for the video, Arturo, that was very interesting. I was using the terms mainly as convenient labels for two ways to see that puzzle. These shortcuts in terminology can save many words in a discussion, although I probably should have used the quotes: "left" and "right".
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on July 26, 2017, 05:30:09 AM
Woah wait. I think you mean xSilverPhinx
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on July 26, 2017, 06:55:23 AM
Well dammit Silver.  I am ambidextrous so I wanted to believe that Both sides of my brain were working in unison such that my brain was better than most.  Oh Well! Live and learn. :grrr:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 31, 2017, 02:28:41 AM
Quote from: Icarus on July 26, 2017, 06:55:23 AM
Well dammit Silver.  I am ambidextrous so I wanted to believe that Both sides of my brain were working in unison such that my brain was better than most.  Oh Well! Live and learn. :grrr:

:P

Have you always been ambidextrous or is it something you had to learn for some reason?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on August 02, 2017, 01:10:35 AM
Naah Silver, I was always confused that way. I could pick my nose with either forefinger and couds write with either hand (when I finally learned to write).  I found the ambi thing useful when doing things like painting or welding. I would start the motion with the left hand and continue by switching mid stroke to the right hand there to continue with equal control. 

Ambidextrous tendency was inconsistent., I would instinctively throw a ball with the right hand and catch the ball with the left hand in the most common manner.

Not to be insensitive but....When I had an industrial accident which removed the first joint of my right forefinger there was a problem that I had never contemplated. The finger ...what was left of it, was very sensitive and somewhat painful for years. I had phantom sensations that indicated some sense of feel in the tip of the damaged finger that was no longer there. During the lengthy recovery period I noticed...could not help but notice, that I had to modify my toilet habits so as to use the left hand which seemed most unnaturally clumsy.  I have been confused by all this but have not lost any sleep about the peculiar muscle memories....whatever that means.  I do know that say...classical guitarists do not have to think about which sting to pluck or which string or strings to fret.

The human body is a mysterious machine. It is encouraging to know that some really bright people, like Silver, are working on the key to all that anatomical and mental research into those mysteries.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 02, 2017, 08:10:18 AM
^

When writing with the left hand did you tend to write "mirror" at first or to curl the hand - or was the curl learned?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 02, 2017, 11:54:51 PM
Quote from: Icarus on August 02, 2017, 01:10:35 AM
Naah Silver, I was always confused that way. I could pick my nose with either forefinger and couds write with either hand (when I finally learned to write).  I found the ambi thing useful when doing things like painting or welding. I would start the motion with the left hand and continue by switching mid stroke to the right hand there to continue with equal control. 

Ambidextrous tendency was inconsistent., I would instinctively throw a ball with the right hand and catch the ball with the left hand in the most common manner.

Not to be insensitive but....When I had an industrial accident which removed the first joint of my right forefinger there was a problem that I had never contemplated. The finger ...what was left of it, was very sensitive and somewhat painful for years. I had phantom sensations that indicated some sense of feel in the tip of the damaged finger that was no longer there. During the lengthy recovery period I noticed...could not help but notice, that I had to modify my toilet habits so as to use the left hand which seemed most unnaturally clumsy.  I have been confused by all this but have not lost any sleep about the peculiar muscle memories....whatever that means.  I do know that say...classical guitarists do not have to think about which sting to pluck or which string or strings to fret.

It's really cool that you're ambidextrous, Icarus. You're a rarity. :grin:

It's actually a good thing to change the way you do things just as it's a good thing to learn something new. The brain likes novelty, even if it's a bit awkward at first.

QuoteThe human body is a mysterious machine. It is encouraging to know that some really bright people, like Silver, are working on the key to all that anatomical and mental research into those mysteries.

:blush: I'm not as bright as all that, but am helped by a lot of truly bright and really knowledgeable people in my endeavours. :smilenod:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on August 03, 2017, 12:34:55 AM
Quote from: Gloucester on August 02, 2017, 08:10:18 AM
^

When writing with the left hand did you tend to write "mirror" at first or to curl the hand - or was the curl learned?

I am usually inclined to write with my left hand. Not only writing but graphics too...Mechanical drawing.... I am an oldie and I was an engineer and draftsman before Autocad, Turbocad, and such. No problem I can use either hand for the drafting pen...or pencil. That was an advantage when drawing a long horizontal line on a sheet of vellum. Switch hands on the way across the page. It did not seem to matter whether I started the line on the left or the right. Direction did not matter. Speed and line accuracy did.

Lefties use the "hook wrist" method to avoid smearing ink when their hand passes from left to right during the writing process. I never used the hook wrist method because I could hold my pens or pencils in such a way as to keep my fingers and heel of the hand below the previously written or drawn lines or text.

When I was in elementary school I frustrated my teachers when I used my left hand to draw or to write. They would sometimes rapp my knuckles with a ruler or other painful tool when I used my left hand.  I'd merely switch hands so as to avoid the ill informed punishment for daring to violate the christian inspired  norm.

I am conscious of the number of people who are predominantly left handed. Barrack Obama,  and some other notables. Obama is a "hook wrist" person.  I notice, perhaps not with statistical validity, that men are more likely than women to be lefties. On the other hand I am a fan of women's championship caliber softball.  Quite few of the premier female athletes in that sport, bat left handed and throw right handed. ....do you have any information...or curiosity... about that Fernanda?  By the way.... many female 115 - 135 pond third base and short stops can throw the damned ball toward first base at a velocity that I never could hope for. That is a whole other study.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 03, 2017, 07:56:42 AM
^

Interesting.

A nephew, a pure left hander, was naturally a "mirror writer" - letters in correct order but back to front. He had to learn to curl his hand and sort of "flip his brsin" before others could easily understand. Perhaps this does not apply to ambis and is purely a brain thing.

I have heard, and read, that trying to force natural lefties to use their right hand can have severe psychological repercussions, especially on the personality.

I was told that the curled hand style was so the writer could see what they are actually writing but it makes more sense when considering the danger of smearing ink when writing or drawing. Er, wonder how the Hebrews and Arabs got over it. But, as you ssy, it is possible to write from below the line, providing "pushing" the pen(cil) does not make it dig in. I can remember the contorions required in many caligraphy styles to prevent that happening. Curable with a ball tipped nib if near constant line width OK.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on August 04, 2017, 02:45:05 AM
SHOCKING NEW ROLE FOUND FOR THE IMMUNE SYSTEM: CONTROLLING SOCIAL INTERACTIONS

QuoteThe UVA researchers have shown that a specific immune molecule, interferon gamma, seems to be critical for social behavior and that a variety of creatures, such as flies, zebrafish, mice and rats, activate interferon gamma responses when they are social. Normally, this molecule is produced by the immune system in response to bacteria, viruses or parasites. Blocking the molecule in mice using genetic modification made regions of the brain hyperactive, causing the mice to become less social. Restoring the molecule restored the brain connectivity and behavior to normal. In a paper outlining their findings, the researchers note the immune molecule plays a "profound role in maintaining proper social function."

https://news.virginia.edu/content/shocking-new-role-found-immune-system-controlling-social-interactions
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 04, 2017, 06:40:18 AM
Quote from: Arturo on August 04, 2017, 02:45:05 AM
SHOCKING NEW ROLE FOUND FOR THE IMMUNE SYSTEM: CONTROLLING SOCIAL INTERACTIONS

QuoteThe UVA researchers have shown that a specific immune molecule, interferon gamma, seems to be critical for social behavior and that a variety of creatures, such as flies, zebrafish, mice and rats, activate interferon gamma responses when they are social. Normally, this molecule is produced by the immune system in response to bacteria, viruses or parasites. Blocking the molecule in mice using genetic modification made regions of the brain hyperactive, causing the mice to become less social. Restoring the molecule restored the brain connectivity and behavior to normal. In a paper outlining their findings, the researchers note the immune molecule plays a "profound role in maintaining proper social function."

https://news.virginia.edu/content/shocking-new-role-found-immune-system-controlling-social-interactions

Have not read full article yet but an immediate thought came to mind: when we socialise, interact physically closely with others, we are at greater risk of acquiring disease - a cold, cough, 'flu, or worse if we get too close, and our systems have evolved to offer more immunity in such situations. Perhaps a sort of "synchronicity" also developed to regulate our behaviour in such circumstances.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 04, 2017, 02:22:36 PM
Very interesting!

Quote from: Gloucester on August 04, 2017, 06:40:18 AM
Have not read full article yet but an immediate thought came to mind: when we socialise, interact physically closely with others, we are at greater risk of acquiring disease - a cold, cough, 'flu, or worse if we get too close, and our systems have evolved to offer more immunity in such situations. Perhaps a sort of "synchronicity" also developed to regulate our behaviour in such circumstances.

:smilenod: It makes sense. From the article:

QuoteThe follow-up finding is equally illuminating, shedding light on both the workings of the brain and on evolution itself. The relationship between people and pathogens, the researchers suggest, could have directly affected the development of our social behavior, allowing us to engage in the social interactions necessary for the survival of the species while developing ways for our immune systems to protect us from the diseases that accompany those interactions. Social behavior is, of course, in the interest of pathogens, as it allows them to spread.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 10, 2017, 08:31:17 PM
Slightly bothered by the "evangelical" approach but, if this is as good as it looks it needs pushing.

[/youtube]

There is at least one other TED by Dr Amen - who runs his own clinic . . .

Other opinions seem to vary from SPECT (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Single-photon_emission_computed_tomography) scanning being an "underutilized tool" (lost link) to "Neurobollocks" (https://neurobollocks.wordpress.com/2013/03/10/utterly-shameless-diagnostic-brain-imaging-neurobollocks/) for Amen's application.

Possibly similar caveats apply as with the case of the structure of psychpath's brains. But, we still need to look at, confirm and refine these tools.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on August 11, 2017, 08:01:56 PM
Fascinating, Gloucester. Thanks.

The plasticity of the brain is marvelous. Harnessing that in cases where it's damaged would be great if it can be studied further...
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on August 18, 2017, 12:58:19 AM
New findings on how brain neurons communicate with each other contradicting the old ideas.

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/08/170817131125.htm
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 18, 2017, 07:46:16 AM
Good find, Arturo. Let's hope they can use this knowledge as therapy as soon as possible.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 18, 2017, 10:05:51 PM
Quote from: Arturo on August 18, 2017, 12:58:19 AM
New findings on how brain neurons communicate with each other contradicting the old ideas.

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/08/170817131125.htm

Very interesting!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: hermes2015 on August 19, 2017, 05:53:30 AM
This will definitely lead to improved therapy for certain conditions. Thanks for a good link.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 21, 2017, 10:57:07 AM
The "enhanced brain" on the way?

This does not fit into the AI thread, or any other I can see, but it does have, literally, a link with the human brain. It is a "threat recognition system" that seems to use the brain's EEG signals to identify targets. I presume, and hope, the brain's owner is allerted then he or she makes some sort of conscious decision as to further action.

But still a bit frightening...

DARPA threat detection technology uses a camera to see targets, software and soldier brains to identify them[/url] (https://www.engadget.com/2012/09/20/darpa-cognitive-technology-threat-warning-system-ct2ws/)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on August 21, 2017, 05:16:04 PM
If you didn't fear for your life enough....
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 25, 2017, 09:30:00 PM


:popcorn:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on August 26, 2017, 05:06:49 AM
^ O.K. Fernanda, you are our resident brain "go to" person.  While looking at and hearing the video, we observe that there are background sounds, near subliminal, sometimes rhythmic and sometimes clearly musical. .....Question: how does that influence our attention span or more importantly our understanding of the subject matter.  Am I just imagining those sounds? Is my brain, whatever is left of it, playing tricks on my perception of the subject matter? 

This is heady stuff...................No pun intended.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 26, 2017, 12:46:01 PM
Quote from: Icarus on August 26, 2017, 05:06:49 AM
^ O.K. Fernanda, you are our resident brain "go to" person.  While looking at and hearing the video, we observe that there are background sounds, near subliminal, sometimes rhythmic and sometimes clearly musical. .....Question: how does that influence our attention span or more importantly our understanding of the subject matter.  Am I just imagining those sounds? Is my brain, whatever is left of it, playing tricks on my perception of the subject matter? 

This is heady stuff...................No pun intended.

That's a very good question Icarus, and to be honest I can't say I know the answer, but I can offer some thoughts on the subject. I also would like to mention that I had to rewatch the clip to notice the background music as I didn't really notice it the first time as I was paying *ahem* full attention to what they were saying. :grin:

I find it interesting that the amount of music played changes with the level -- listen to the background noise when he's explaining to the 5 year old at the beginning and to the expert at the end. The music is louder and more complex when he starts than when he finishes. As for the complexity of the subject matter, the reverse is true.

This is a hypothesis:

I think since the subject matter is less complex at lower levels maybe whoever produced the video thought that adding more complex music would not impair attention? :notsure: In other words, it's safer to add background music when the receiver doesn't have to focus too much of their attentional resources in order to process what is being said (lower, more basic levels mean less cognitive load, you can have the "luxury" of listening to more complex music then without having it interfere too much with your cognitive capacity). When he talks to the expert there is practically no background music. Maybe that's because at that stage having music compete for your attention would be detrimental and your mind might wander and encode the information less efficiently.     

Also, I might add, I think the music is pleasant (I don't know if you feel the same). Experiencing emotional arousal when listening to music might also help learn, depending on the emotion, the person's state of mind and personality. There is controversy surrounding this subject as background music does seem to facilitate or impair learning depending on those factors and the type of learning or processing involved. For instance, studies on the "Mozart Effect" suggest that classical music is good for performing spacial-reasoning tasks, among others.

I'm interested to read any thoughts anybody has on this.:smilenod:  This goes back to the discussion on multitasking that was had previously.   
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 26, 2017, 01:11:56 PM
Quote from: Icarus on August 26, 2017, 05:06:49 AM
^ O.K. Fernanda, you are our resident brain "go to" person.  While looking at and hearing the video, we observe that there are background sounds, near subliminal, sometimes rhythmic and sometimes clearly musical. .....Question: how does that influence our attention span or more importantly our understanding of the subject matter.  Am I just imagining those sounds? Is my brain, whatever is left of it, playing tricks on my perception of the subject matter? 

This is heady stuff...................No pun intended.

One thing I have noticed in my life is that certain kinds of background  noise actually help my attention and retention. Mostly the sort of background "hubbub" you get in a cafe or waiting room. I often wondered if it encouraged me to unconsciously concentrate harder to shut the distractions out. Visual distractions have the opposite effect, people merely walking around in my peripheral vision break my concentration.

Later: was the music actually present during the explainations, could the participants hear it, or was it dubbed in by an arty-farty producer in post-prod? The BBC have taken to playing music behind some documentary type programmes (usually iones of a "social" nature), even some plays, and sometimes loud enough for my now less discriminating hearing to have trouble hearing what the actors say (especially bass notes under a high female voice.) This spoils the programmes for me and I (and others) have complained about it - less music in plays, no change in docus.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on August 26, 2017, 03:30:44 PM
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 26, 2017, 03:44:15 PM
Quote from: Arturo on August 26, 2017, 03:30:44 PM


Seems that video is "not available" to me.

But I do know the brain tries to "hear" things in white noise. Ditto when, in the old days, the TV ended for the night and the screen was filled with "snow", concentrate on it and you could convince yourself you were half seeing images from a poorly tuned or very weak signal.

All this digital stuff has taken away such fun!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on August 26, 2017, 10:51:32 PM
It turns all the sounds of a song (like "staying alive" or the "pokemon theme song") and turns them into piano sounds. You can hear all the lyrics despite them not really being there. Given that you know the lyrics anyway. At the end of the video some of the songs are turned into "singing". I put that in quotes because it doesn't really sound like singing but that's what the creator called it.

I'll post the direct link in case it might work for you Gloucester
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZY6h3pKqYI0
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 27, 2017, 01:09:38 AM
Quote from: Arturo on August 26, 2017, 03:30:44 PM


Ah, illusions are cool! :grin:

I only heard the chorus clearly but not the rest as I don't know the lyrics by heart.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 27, 2017, 01:16:34 AM
Check this out:



Association areas, possibly?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on August 27, 2017, 01:21:15 AM
^ I could kind of tell what he was saying. I heard both. Even when I looked at them side by side I heard both.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 27, 2017, 06:52:31 AM
Quote from: Arturo on August 26, 2017, 10:51:32 PM
It turns all the sounds of a song (like "staying alive" or the "pokemon theme song") and turns them into piano sounds. You can hear all the lyrics despite them not really being there. Given that you know the lyrics anyway. At the end of the video some of the songs are turned into "singing". I put that in quotes because it doesn't really sound like singing but that's what the creator called it.

I'll post the direct link in case it might work for you Gloucester
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZY6h3pKqYI0

Nope, no video. But surely that depends on knowing the words of the song - a rather self-selecting effect? Play bursts of white sound to the rhythm of a tune and the brain will fill in, or select, the notes . . . If it knows them.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on August 27, 2017, 08:18:13 AM
Well now that I recall, there were some songs my near 60 year old Dad said he hear the lyrics to that only I would know because the are from my childhood.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 27, 2017, 09:08:23 AM
I have virtually no interest in music at all, it was never part of my childhood and I never got to be attracted to it as I grew. I own, naybe, 6 CDs and played one of them last about five years ago. If a music programme comes on the radio I tune to a talk orog ir turn it off.

But it is impossible to totally shut out music in this media driven world so, despite myself, I can recognise lots of vlassical and modern tunes and even remember some words to some popular songs. So yes, if I hear a rhythm that my brain recognises, even if only partially, it will try to fill the gaps. I may even remember the title if I think about it.

But it may be more due to a "subliminal" effect, the unconscious absorption and memory of a "passing" experience whilst my conscious mind is occupied with something totally different.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on August 28, 2017, 04:11:46 PM
Quote from: Arturo on August 26, 2017, 03:30:44 PM

That seems to me to be all that a wav file is, just converted over to piano keys at a reduced "bitrate". If you reduce the samples per second on sound files, it would have a similar effect.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on August 28, 2017, 04:15:02 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on August 27, 2017, 01:16:34 AM
Check this out:



Association areas, possibly?
That used to work on me, but not anymore. Now it just looks like his mouth is moving wrong when he does the 'fa' motion.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 28, 2017, 11:14:59 PM
Quote from: Gloucester on August 27, 2017, 09:08:23 AM
I have virtually no interest in music at all, it was never part of my childhood and I never got to be attracted to it as I grew. I own, naybe, 6 CDs and played one of them last about five years ago. If a music programme comes on the radio I tune to a talk orog ir turn it off.

But it is impossible to totally shut out music in this media driven world so, despite myself, I can recognise lots of vlassical and modern tunes and even remember some words to some popular songs. So yes, if I hear a rhythm that my brain recognises, even if only partially, it will try to fill the gaps. I may even remember the title if I think about it.

But it may be more due to a "subliminal" effect, the unconscious absorption and memory of a "passing" experience whilst my conscious mind is occupied with something totally different.

Music is great, I love it. :grin:

(https://scontent.fpoa4-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/21105839_1947800815477028_7535322162659160359_n.jpg?oh=76cdb67a7a8dabef2272cfcb16253bcf&oe=5A2FDF34)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 28, 2017, 11:49:04 PM
Quote from: Davin on August 28, 2017, 04:15:02 PM
That used to work on me, but not anymore. Now it just looks like his mouth is moving wrong when he does the 'fa' motion.

Interesting. :chin:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on August 28, 2017, 11:58:13 PM
xSP - great "Connectome" video. Interesting stuff...

As for the music auditory illusion, I wonder if you'd hear words if you didn't know the original song. Or if the song was in another language (like Italian).

... and from a movie/commercial viewpoint, music can definitely alter attention. I think it can make some subjects and concepts easier to learn and remember. It may make the brain more receptive to advertising... MIND CONTROL!!!

My favorite music for a commercial product was "By Mennen!"
Simple, memorable, earworm.

(at the end of this spot:)_
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 29, 2017, 12:04:14 AM
Quote from: joeactor on August 28, 2017, 11:58:13 PM
... MIND CONTROL!!!

:panic: :worried:


QuoteMy favorite music for a commercial product was "By Mennen!"
Simple, memorable, earworm.

(at the end of this spot:)_


Byyyyy Mennen.

Buy Mennen?

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on August 29, 2017, 12:15:41 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on August 29, 2017, 12:04:14 AM
Quote from: joeactor on August 28, 2017, 11:58:13 PM
... MIND CONTROL!!!

:panic: :worried:


Byyyyy Mennen.

Buy Mennen?

sneaky...
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on August 29, 2017, 12:42:13 AM
Mennen speed sticks still work. I buy them at the dollar store for....you guessed it, one dollar.  I can buy the same ones at the drug store or grocery store for about five dollars. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on November 18, 2017, 10:28:18 PM


Adorable! ;D
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on November 19, 2017, 04:18:42 AM
I want to adopt that kid. She is precious......and obviously quite precocious.

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on November 19, 2017, 08:30:19 AM
Quote from: Icarus on November 19, 2017, 04:18:42 AM
I want to adopt that kid. She is precious......and obviously quite precocious.

And she is so obviously not just parroting something she learned by rote. How much she actually understsnds . . .

Hope she plays with dolls as well.

There was a six year old boy ftom Syria interviewed, he was more articulate and informed, in English, than most of the adults I have heard. Pity that he was not then able to get out, I would sponsor him if I could.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on December 29, 2017, 01:41:03 PM
Just leaving this here. :grin:

http://www.brainfacts.org/ (http://www.brainfacts.org/)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on December 29, 2017, 02:17:40 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on December 29, 2017, 01:41:03 PM
Just leaving this here. :grin:

http://www.brainfacts.org/ (http://www.brainfacts.org/)

I see my inner, and outer, primate everytime I look in the mirror!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on December 30, 2017, 11:07:41 PM
NPR (National Public Radio) today had an interview with a most interesting man who had some sort of brain damage as a youth.  He had never been musically inclined and had no particular interest in music although his grandmother was an accomplished organist.  He had a swimming pool accident...diving into the shallow end of the pool and busting his head severely.  After a few weeks of recovery, he found that he could play the piano and play classical music without knowing how or why he could do so. He became a music savant. apparently as a result of a head injury.

Has anyone ever heard of similar phenomena as applied to brain function?  Is there a mutant musical gene, math gene, writing gene,  or something?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on December 31, 2017, 07:57:36 AM
Quote from: Icarus on December 30, 2017, 11:07:41 PM
NPR (National Public Radio) today had an interview with a most interesting man who had some sort of brain damage as a youth.  He had never been musically inclined and had no particular interest in music although his grandmother was an accomplished organist.  He had a swimming pool accident...diving into the shallow end of the pool and busting his head severely.  After a few weeks of recovery, he found that he could play the piano and play classical music without knowing how or why he could do so. He became a music savant. apparently as a result of a head injury.

Has anyone ever heard of similar phenomena as applied to brain function?  Is there a mutant musical gene, math gene, writing gene,  or something?

Certainly heard of
, to use that unPC term "idiot savants" who have had a nstural flair to learn music and an kndtrument but I think even they needed some period of familiarisstion.

One young lad could hear a piece of music once, play it "straight" immediately then play any number of variations - straight out of his head.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: hermes2015 on December 31, 2017, 01:56:48 PM
Quote from: Dave on December 31, 2017, 07:57:36 AM
One young lad could hear a piece of music once, play it "straight" immediately then play any number of variations - straight out of his head.

Mozart could do it as child.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Bad Penny II on December 31, 2017, 02:06:46 PM
Quote from: Icarus on December 30, 2017, 11:07:41 PM
NPR (National Public Radio) today had an interview with a most interesting man who had some sort of brain damage as a youth.  He had never been musically inclined and had no particular interest in music although his grandmother was an accomplished organist.  He had a swimming pool accident...diving into the shallow end of the pool and busting his head severely.  After a few weeks of recovery, he found that he could play the piano and play classical music without knowing how or why he could do so. He became a music savant. apparently as a result of a head injury.

Has anyone ever heard of similar phenomena as applied to brain function?  Is there a mutant musical gene, math gene, writing gene,  or something?

It'd be interesting to know if he lost anything when his head hit pool bottom.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on December 31, 2017, 09:37:46 PM
Quote from: Bad Penny II on December 31, 2017, 02:06:46 PM
Quote from: Icarus on December 30, 2017, 11:07:41 PM
NPR (National Public Radio) today had an interview with a most interesting man who had some sort of brain damage as a youth.  He had never been musically inclined and had no particular interest in music although his grandmother was an accomplished organist.  He had a swimming pool accident...diving into the shallow end of the pool and busting his head severely.  After a few weeks of recovery, he found that he could play the piano and play classical music without knowing how or why he could do so. He became a music savant. apparently as a result of a head injury.

Has anyone ever heard of similar phenomena as applied to brain function?  Is there a mutant musical gene, math gene, writing gene,  or something?

It'd be interesting to know if he lost anything when his head hit pool bottom.

Yeah, probably "deactivated" or lessened the brain activity of a particular region for a savant ability to suddenly appear.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on December 31, 2017, 09:56:33 PM
This is a strange area, like the woman who, after a head injury, spoke with what sounded like an Italian accent. Seems it is a recognised syndrome.
https://youtu.be/RbYXXyMb8I0

Watching her face it was obviously still a painful mrmory.

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on January 01, 2018, 06:36:49 PM
^ That is very odd indeed.

Must mess with her sense of identity, it must be tough being seen as an outsider/foreigner in your own country. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on January 04, 2018, 07:59:54 PM
Quote from: Dave on December 31, 2017, 09:56:33 PM
This is a strange area, like the woman who, after a head injury, spoke with what sounded like an Italian accent. Seems it is a recognised syndrome.
https://youtu.be/RbYXXyMb8I0

Watching her face it was obviously still a painful mrmory.

Wow. It looks difficult to say the least.

I can hear a number of different accents in her speech. Her brain must be producing different vowel/consonant sounds than she intends.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on January 22, 2018, 09:42:13 PM
It's a pain . . But why?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3cswdkg#play
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on January 24, 2018, 05:33:51 PM
^ Bookmarked for later. :popcorn:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on January 24, 2018, 06:22:18 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on January 24, 2018, 05:33:51 PM
^ Bookmarked for later. :popcorn:

How long is your bookmark backlog now then, Silver?  :news:

:grin:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on January 24, 2018, 06:28:16 PM
Quote from: Dave on January 24, 2018, 06:22:18 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on January 24, 2018, 05:33:51 PM
^ Bookmarked for later. :popcorn:

How long is your bookmark backlog now then, Silver?  :news:

:grin:

Just the bookmark backlog? Too long! :P That's not counting the videos I added to my "Watch Later" playlist on Youtube or my reading list! 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on March 13, 2018, 12:42:56 PM
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 03, 2018, 01:52:46 AM
A list of short "Your brain on ___________" series.











Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on April 04, 2018, 03:14:24 PM
I watched those last night, I think they were great.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 07, 2018, 01:19:24 PM
I found this PBS Nova documentary on Memory:



Before watching it, maybe think a little and try to answer the question, "What is memory?":grin: I think you'll find that the answer isn't as simple as the question!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on April 12, 2018, 07:46:22 PM
This is an oldish (as things brain go) Ted talk, but I found it interesting. There msy be hope for me yet . . .

https://youtu.be/LNHBMFCzznE
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 13, 2018, 02:39:49 PM
^ All brains are plastic, even if that plasticity declines with age.

I think whether an older person learns well or not has a lot to do with mindset, the learner's previous self-judgement of their capacity goes a long way. For instance, my mother teaches English to a lot of older students (retired people looking to keep their brains active in their senior years) and says that a lot of them believe that they won't learn anything in their old age. That an old dog can't learn new tricks, which obviously isn't true. Those that are more open-minded to the fact that they will learn (if they put in the effort, of course) do learn better than those who don't.

Positive belief goes a long way. Those who don't give themselves a chance are at a disadvantage.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Bad Penny II on April 13, 2018, 02:55:02 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on April 13, 2018, 02:39:49 PMThose that are more open-minded to the fact that they will learn (if they put in the effort, of course) do learn better than those who don't.

Positive belief goes a long way. Those who don't give themselves a chance are at a disadvantage.

They probably got their positive belief from past success.
The negs prob'ly got their attitude from past failures.
A man's got to know his limitations. [Clint E snear]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 13, 2018, 03:06:11 PM
Quote from: Bad Penny II on April 13, 2018, 02:55:02 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on April 13, 2018, 02:39:49 PMThose that are more open-minded to the fact that they will learn (if they put in the effort, of course) do learn better than those who don't.

Positive belief goes a long way. Those who don't give themselves a chance are at a disadvantage.

They probably got their positive belief from past success.
The negs prob'ly got their attitude from past failures.
A man's got to know his limitations. [Clint E snear]

Everyone fails and succeeds, so why do some focus on failures while others more on their successes? 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Bad Penny II on April 13, 2018, 03:23:28 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on April 13, 2018, 03:06:11 PM
Everyone fails and succeeds, so why do some focus on failures while others more on their successes?

Everyone fails and succeeds but some succeed a lot more than others.
Some have to fail to make the others the statistical successes they are.
I'm sure the answer is to be found either in their nature or their nurturing.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 14, 2018, 03:10:46 PM
Quote from: Bad Penny II on April 13, 2018, 03:23:28 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on April 13, 2018, 03:06:11 PM
Everyone fails and succeeds, so why do some focus on failures while others more on their successes?

Everyone fails and succeeds but some succeed a lot more than others.
Some have to fail to make the others the statistical successes they are.

That's true. But failures seem to carry extra weight for some people, make a stronger impression in their minds. Of course it depends what they've failed at and what they think of it...Whether they feel they can brush it off and try again or whether they stop in order to avoid further failures. In people with chronic depression, for instance, a structure called the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is overactive which results in people "overremembering" autobiographical memories, especially the bad ones, compared to healthy control subjects. The ACC is usually the target for implanting a deep brain stimulator (in this case, inhibitor) in people with major depression as a last resort, when medication fails.   

Quote
I'm sure the answer is to be found either in their nature or their nurturing.

Probably in both.  :)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 21, 2018, 04:46:44 PM
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on April 24, 2018, 03:46:10 PM
I like that one. I subscribed to the channel, because it has a lot of good videos.

I wonder what's different with my mind that I don't really like social media. Maybe it's just because I'm old.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on April 24, 2018, 04:07:21 PM
Quote from: Davin on April 24, 2018, 03:46:10 PM
I like that one. I subscribed to the channel, because it has a lot of good videos.

I wonder what's different with my mind that I don't really like social media. Maybe it's just because I'm old.

I feel the same way. I know oldies like me who are anti-social media fans but I only keep my Facebook account oir when someone links to Fb or there is some cause I want to support. Not anti-social, just don't feel the need for much of the stuff on there.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 27, 2018, 10:20:16 PM
Quote from: Davin on April 24, 2018, 03:46:10 PM
I wonder what's different with my mind that I don't really like social media. Maybe it's just because I'm old.

Maybe you have other priorities?  :shrug:

I don't like social media much either, but feel "forced" to use FB because everyone else does. For instance, when I was an undergraduate, news on what was going on on campus, tips and recommendations were given in FB groups. It helps me keep in touch with extended family who live far away as well.

But I hate FB. I don't understand how someone can want to have 1000+ "friends" and not know who 80% of them are. "Friends" became collectables now?   
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: No one on April 28, 2018, 12:15:15 AM
Faceplace should be renamed "My Giant Inflated Ego"!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on April 30, 2018, 03:44:32 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on April 27, 2018, 10:20:16 PM
Quote from: Davin on April 24, 2018, 03:46:10 PM
I wonder what's different with my mind that I don't really like social media. Maybe it's just because I'm old.

Maybe you have other priorities?  :shrug:

I don't like social media much either, but feel "forced" to use FB because everyone else does. For instance, when I was an undergraduate, news on what was going on on campus, tips and recommendations were given in FB groups. It helps me keep in touch with extended family who live far away as well.

But I hate FB. I don't understand how someone can want to have 1000+ "friends" and not know who 80% of them are. "Friends" became collectables now?
I think that's true (but I still think there is a bit of an old man thing going on with me), I think it comes down to goals and finding tools to meet those goals. I like talking to family and friends, but I find the format of FaceBook to me more of a hindrance for me. For some people though, that is the only way to do it more than a few times a year. If there were a tool better suited to my needs, I'd probably be using that a lot. But because I don't see how someone can create a several billion dollar a year business on a platform that suits me better, nor do I see all my friends and family liking it as much as I would, I don't think that is likely to happen.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on April 30, 2018, 09:26:17 PM
Silver, I know you think it is yucky but do listen to the last in "The second genome" series (if you have not already got it tagged). This covers the effect on the gut flora on our brains, on depression, Parkinsonism etc. And vice versa. Fascinating!

QuoteIn this final episode of the series BBC Science and Health correspondent James Gallagher examines a growing body of research into the gut as a gateway to the mind and why some scientists believe we could be o the cusp of a revolution in psychiatry that uses microbes to improve mental health.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09zxl63
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on May 12, 2018, 07:01:33 PM
OK, no discussing the pros and cons of this quiz, just do it and show us your score folks!

https://youtu.be/DgJWkF8rHjY

[spoiler]
I scored 38 - balanced brain (if not always level headed.)
(https://imgur.com/A54V9ST.jpg)
[/spoiler]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: hermes2015 on May 12, 2018, 07:47:40 PM
I also scored 38.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on May 12, 2018, 07:55:46 PM
I should have done this as a poll!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on May 13, 2018, 02:19:15 AM
I had a high ball and a low ball since some questions I had multiple answers to.

High Score 40

Low Score 32

When it comes down to it I am just a balanced being.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on May 13, 2018, 11:34:56 AM
Quote from: Dave on May 12, 2018, 07:01:33 PM
OK, no discussing the pros and cons of this quiz...

:snooty:

I got 40.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Essie Mae on May 13, 2018, 12:05:53 PM
Balanced, tho' I must confess I lost count a bit; does that make me more male or female?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on May 13, 2018, 12:34:42 PM
Quote from: Essie Mae on May 13, 2018, 12:05:53 PM
Balanced, tho' I must confess I lost count a bit; does that make me more male or female?

As an aspiring gentleman I could not possibly offer an opinion, Essie

My excuse would be my age . . .
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: hermes2015 on May 13, 2018, 12:38:53 PM
Quote from: Essie Mae on May 13, 2018, 12:05:53 PM
Balanced, tho' I must confess I lost count a bit; does that make me more male or female?

:shocked:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Tom62 on May 13, 2018, 01:04:28 PM
I got 32.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on May 13, 2018, 10:24:49 PM
32 .............some of the questions had two valid or semi valid numerals from which to choose. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Essie Mae on May 13, 2018, 11:00:14 PM
Quote from: Dave on May 13, 2018, 12:34:42 PM
Quote from: Essie Mae on May 13, 2018, 12:05:53 PM
Balanced, tho' I must confess I lost count a bit; does that make me more male or female?

As an aspiring gentleman I could not possibly offer an opinion, Essie

My excuse would be my age . . .

Yeah, you're probably right ..... About me I mean, not you .....
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on May 14, 2018, 03:11:18 PM
I got 33. There is a lot in there that doesn't make sense, but as a joke quiz it's not bad.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on May 14, 2018, 05:46:47 PM
I got 35, smack-dab in the middle.

How many points do you get if you find the music annoying?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on May 14, 2018, 06:02:12 PM
Quote from: joeactor on May 14, 2018, 05:46:47 PM
I got 35, smack-dab in the middle.

How many points do you get if you find the music annoying?

I turned the volume down to zero!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on May 28, 2018, 09:51:16 AM
Listening to BBC's "Start the weel" prog (group of people talking about various subjects with links - this weeks it is "Survival and Destruction"
[spoiler]
QuoteIn a special edition at Hay Festival, Tom Sutcliffe explores success and failure, from Homer's epic poetry to global pandemics.

The historian David Christian looks at the birth and development of the universe. He weaves together science, arts and humanities in his vast tale of human existence.

Emily Wilson is the first woman to translate, The Odyssey, the great adventure story of classical literature.

The historian Antony Beevor reconstructs the tragedy of Arnhem, the Battle for the Bridges in 1944. He questions whether the British military strategy was doomed from the start.

Success and failure are woven through Dr Jonathan D Quick's study of epidemics. He asks whether politics and science can come together to prevent the deaths of millions of people.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b42pcw
[/spoiler]
One comment (in a very interesting web of discussion) made my ears prick up, that in WW2 Holland a starvation policy by the Germans caused a higher incidence in schixophrenia in the next generation. It is starving the preghant mothers that is the problem and it seems quite widespread now.

Starvation Increases Schizophrenia Risk
Children born to starving mothers are more likely to develop schizophrenia, according to a new study of people conceived during the Chinese Famine of 1959 to 1961. The results support the idea that prenatal nutritional deficiency raises the risk of schizophrenia and provides hope that schizophrenia risk can be lowered by making sure pregnant women receive proper nutrition.

http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2005/08/starvation-increases-schizophrenia-risk
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Essie Mae on May 30, 2018, 11:18:17 PM
Quote from: Dave on May 28, 2018, 09:51:16 AM
Listening to BBC's "Start the weel" prog (group of people talking about various subjects with links - this weeks it is "Survival and Destruction"
[spoiler]
QuoteIn a special edition at Hay Festival, Tom Sutcliffe explores success and failure, from Homer's epic poetry to global pandemics.

The historian David Christian looks at the birth and development of the universe. He weaves together science, arts and humanities in his vast tale of human existence.

Emily Wilson is the first woman to translate, The Odyssey, the great adventure story of classical literature.

The historian Antony Beevor reconstructs the tragedy of Arnhem, the Battle for the Bridges in 1944. He questions whether the British military strategy was doomed from the start.

Success and failure are woven through Dr Jonathan D Quick's study of epidemics. He asks whether politics and science can come together to prevent the deaths of millions of people.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b42pcw
[/spoiler]
One comment (in a very interesting web of discussion) made my ears prick up, that in WW2 Holland a starvation policy by the Germans caused a higher incidence in schixophrenia in the next generation. It is starving the preghant mothers that is the problem and it seems quite widespread now.

Starvation Increases Schizophrenia Risk
Children born to starving mothers are more likely to develop schizophrenia, according to a new study of people conceived during the Chinese Famine of 1959 to 1961. The results support the idea that prenatal nutritional deficiency raises the risk of schizophrenia and provides hope that schizophrenia risk can be lowered by making sure pregnant women receive proper nutrition.

http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2005/08/starvation-increases-schizophrenia-risk

I never heard that before. How amazing.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on May 31, 2018, 12:37:34 AM
I'm surprised I missed this. Schizophrenia does have a genetic component and how one eats during their life affects their genes that gets passed down to the next generation. So that's interesting to hear that starvation causes this issue. It comes no surprise though since certain deficiencies during pregnancy have already been shown to increase schizophrenia risk.

However it's not all cut and dry like that. Also schizophrenia has been shown to increase in urban areas. And there is an environmental factor that goes into as well. Like childhood adversity, abuse, or social isolation.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on May 31, 2018, 06:13:13 AM
Quote from: Arturo on May 31, 2018, 12:37:34 AM
I'm surprised I missed this. Schizophrenia does have a genetic component and how one eats during their life affects their genes that gets passed down to the next generation. So that's interesting to hear that starvation causes this issue. It comes no surprise though since certain deficiencies during pregnancy have already been shown to increase schizophrenia risk.

However it's not all cut and dry like that. Also schizophrenia has been shown to increase in urban areas. And there is an environmental factor that goes into as well. Like childhood adversity, abuse, or social isolation.

And cannabis msy only increase the problem:
QuoteThe psychosis-cannabis question
To date, the consensus is that cannabis use increases the risk of psychosis but, across the population, the effect is relatively small. However, the effect seems to be stronger in individuals who are already at risk, such as people with a family history of psychotic disorders or those who have experienced childhood abuse.
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/317170.php
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on May 31, 2018, 01:28:00 PM
Cannabis has some link to schizophrenia. However there was some place in Europe I believe where cannabis use was very common but the rate of schizophrenia did not increase. Some people took that as an all out conclusion (a problem I think too many people have with more than just smoking weed) that cannabis doesn't cause mental illness, and that whoever gets ill after smoking weed was actually fucked up before they ever smoked any weed.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on June 03, 2018, 11:35:34 AM
Instead of adding this to the "Homo sapiens and Their Cousins" thread, I decided to put it here.

"Meet NOTCH2NL, the human-specific genes that may have given us our big brains" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180531114639.htm)

QuoteThe evolution of larger brains in the last 3 million years played an important role in our ability as a species to think, problem-solve, and develop culture. But the genetic changes behind the expansion that made us human have been elusive. In a pair of papers publishing May 31 in Cell, two teams of researchers identify a gene family, NOTCH2NL, that appears to play an important role in human-specific cortex development and may have been a driving force in the evolution of our large brains. NOTCH2NL genes delay the differentiation of cortical stem cells into neurons, resulting in the production of more neurons across the course of development. The genes are found exclusively in humans, are heavily expressed in neural stem cells of the human cerebral cortex, and are located on a part of the genome implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders.

"Our brains got three times as big primarily through the expansion of certain functional areas of the cerebral cortex, and that has to be a fundamental substrate for us becoming human. There's really no more exciting scientific question that I can think of than discovering and decoding the mysterious genetic changes that made us who we are," says David Haussler, co-senior author of one of the papers and a bioinformatician at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

[Continues . . . (http://url=https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180531114639.htm)]

The excellent science writer Ed Yong also has a write-up on this finding. I noticed that this team used the same technique as the one that is attempting to study Neanderthal brains (http://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=14125.msg375035#msg375035):

"A New Genetic Clue to How Humans Got Such Big Brains" | The Atlantic (https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/05/a-new-genetic-clue-to-how-our-brains-got-so-big/561602/)

QuoteIt started with some blobs of brain-like tissue, growing in a dish.

Frank Jacobs, then at the University of California at Santa Cruz, had taken stem cells from humans and monkeys, and coaxed them into forming small balls of neurons. These "organoids" mirror the early stages of brain development. By studying them, Jacobs could look for genes that are switched on more strongly in the growing brains of humans than in those of monkeys. And when he presented his data to his colleagues at a lab meeting, one gene grabbed everyone's attention.

"There was a gene called NOTCH2NL that was screaming in humans and off in [the monkeys]," says Sofie Salama, who co-directs the Santa Cruz team with David Haussler. "What the hell is NOTCH2NL? None of us had ever heard of it."

The team ultimately learned that NOTCH2NL appears to be inactive in monkeys because it doesn't exist in monkeys. It's unique to humans, and it likely controls the number of neurons we make as embryos. It's one of a growing list of human-only genes that could help explain why our brains are so much bigger than those of other apes.

[Continues . . . (https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/05/a-new-genetic-clue-to-how-our-brains-got-so-big/561602/)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on June 03, 2018, 04:56:40 PM
This seems familiar...did Dave post this somewhere already?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on June 03, 2018, 04:57:33 PM
Quote from: Arturo on June 03, 2018, 04:56:40 PM
This seems familiar...did Dave post this somewhere already?

Not to my memory!

[spoiler]But then, knowing my nemory . . .[/spoiler]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Arturo on June 03, 2018, 05:05:34 PM
^And my memory too!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on June 04, 2018, 02:24:58 AM
Quote from: Recusant on June 03, 2018, 11:35:34 AM
Instead of adding this to the "Homo sapiens and Their Cousins" thread, I decided to put it here.

"Meet NOTCH2NL, the human-specific genes that may have given us our big brains" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180531114639.htm)

QuoteThe evolution of larger brains in the last 3 million years played an important role in our ability as a species to think, problem-solve, and develop culture. But the genetic changes behind the expansion that made us human have been elusive. In a pair of papers publishing May 31 in Cell, two teams of researchers identify a gene family, NOTCH2NL, that appears to play an important role in human-specific cortex development and may have been a driving force in the evolution of our large brains. NOTCH2NL genes delay the differentiation of cortical stem cells into neurons, resulting in the production of more neurons across the course of development. The genes are found exclusively in humans, are heavily expressed in neural stem cells of the human cerebral cortex, and are located on a part of the genome implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders.

"Our brains got three times as big primarily through the expansion of certain functional areas of the cerebral cortex, and that has to be a fundamental substrate for us becoming human. There's really no more exciting scientific question that I can think of than discovering and decoding the mysterious genetic changes that made us who we are," says David Haussler, co-senior author of one of the papers and a bioinformatician at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

[Continues . . . (http://url=https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180531114639.htm)]

The excellent science writer Ed Yong also has a write-up on this finding. I noticed that this team used the same technique as the one that is attempting to study Neanderthal brains (http://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=14125.msg375035#msg375035):

"A New Genetic Clue to How Humans Got Such Big Brains" | The Atlantic (https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/05/a-new-genetic-clue-to-how-our-brains-got-so-big/561602/)

QuoteIt started with some blobs of brain-like tissue, growing in a dish.

Frank Jacobs, then at the University of California at Santa Cruz, had taken stem cells from humans and monkeys, and coaxed them into forming small balls of neurons. These "organoids" mirror the early stages of brain development. By studying them, Jacobs could look for genes that are switched on more strongly in the growing brains of humans than in those of monkeys. And when he presented his data to his colleagues at a lab meeting, one gene grabbed everyone's attention.

"There was a gene called NOTCH2NL that was screaming in humans and off in [the monkeys]," says Sofie Salama, who co-directs the Santa Cruz team with David Haussler. "What the hell is NOTCH2NL? None of us had ever heard of it."

The team ultimately learned that NOTCH2NL appears to be inactive in monkeys because it doesn't exist in monkeys. It's unique to humans, and it likely controls the number of neurons we make as embryos. It's one of a growing list of human-only genes that could help explain why our brains are so much bigger than those of other apes.

[Continues . . . (https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/05/a-new-genetic-clue-to-how-our-brains-got-so-big/561602/)]

Very interesting! Thanks, Recusant!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on July 11, 2018, 06:49:00 PM
Summat funny going on 'ere (again) with Youtube.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on July 11, 2018, 06:50:33 PM
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on July 27, 2018, 09:10:11 PM
This is more psychology/philosophy but, what the heck! Still brain stuff.

Do you accept advice easily? Need a nudge? What makes a scout bee different from a worker? Are you curious about these things?

This edition of "Crowd Science" explores these things.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3cswvww

Quote
Why does history repeat itself?

Teenagers are known for ignoring their parents' advice, but is this reputation for rebellion well-founded? If so, is rejecting the advice of previous generations and treading our own path an important part of what it means to be human? Are we successful as a species precisely because of our questioning natures?

Listener Hans started pondering these questions after his own adolescent children repeatedly ignored his nagging. Many animals simply follow in their parents' footsteps – so what makes human children different?

Marnie Chesterton and a panel of experts look at the science of taking advice and making decisions, finding out how human curiosity and exploration compare to other animals, learning the best ways to give and take advice, and seeing whether we're more likely to trust artificial intelligence than the wisdom of our elders. Finally, we give listener Hans some expert advice on whether or not to keep nagging his kids.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 28, 2018, 09:23:35 PM
^ I would very much like to listen to that, but the link you posted takes me to BBC Sports and an unrelated podcast.   :-\
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on July 28, 2018, 09:27:53 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on July 28, 2018, 09:23:35 PM
^ I would very much like to listen to that, but the link you posted takes me to BBC Sports and an unrelated podcast.   :-\

It did that to me at first, thought that I had got the right link. This one works (well, it did when I tried it!)

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3cswvww
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on July 28, 2018, 09:32:20 PM
Quote from: Dave on July 28, 2018, 09:27:53 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on July 28, 2018, 09:23:35 PM
^ I would very much like to listen to that, but the link you posted takes me to BBC Sports and an unrelated podcast.   :-\

It did that to me at first, thought that I had got the right link. This one works (well, it did when I tried it!)

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3cswvww

Perfect! Thanks, Dave!  ;D
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on July 28, 2018, 10:35:12 PM
August edition of National Geographic has a lengthy article about how sleep, or lack of it, influences some of our essential brain functions. It deals with circadian rhythms as well.  :count sheep:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 15, 2018, 09:15:13 PM


Neuromyths.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 16, 2018, 06:02:40 AM
PET scans for dopamine  reactions in the brain may help to predict whether or not antipsychotics will be efficacious in treating schizophrenia. Since antipsychotics can have debilitating side effecrs, and more than one msy be prescribed on a "suck-it-and-see" basis over a long period, this sounds like good news!

[...]
PET and SPECT imaging has been used to investigate dopaminergic parameters in schizophrenia, beginning with studies of D2/3 receptors14, 15 and later covering presynaptic function, including dopamine synthesis capacity and dopamine release, and transporters.
[...]

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3730746/

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 17, 2018, 01:13:59 AM
That's cool Dave!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 28, 2018, 10:09:07 AM
"Scientists identify a new kind of human brain cell" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/08/180827180809.htm)

QuoteOne of the most intriguing questions about the human brain is also one of the most difficult for neuroscientists to answer: What sets our brains apart from those of other animals?

"We really don't understand what makes the human brain special," said Ed Lein, Ph.D., Investigator at the Allen Institute for Brain Science. "Studying the differences at the level of cells and circuits is a good place to start, and now we have new tools to do just that."

In a new study published today in the journal Nature Neuroscience, Lein and his colleagues reveal one possible answer to that difficult question. The research team, co-led by Lein and Gábor Tamás, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at the University of Szeged in Szeged, Hungary, has uncovered a new type of human brain cell that has never been seen in mice and other well-studied laboratory animals.

Tamás and University of Szeged doctoral student Eszter Boldog dubbed these new cells "rosehip neurons" -- to them, the dense bundle each brain cell's axon forms around the cell's center looks just like a rose after it has shed its petals, he said. The newly discovered cells belong to a class of neurons known as inhibitory neurons, which put the brakes on the activity of other neurons in the brain.

The study hasn't proven that this special brain cell is unique to humans. But the fact that the special neuron doesn't exist in rodents is intriguing, adding these cells to a very short list of specialized neurons that may exist only in humans or only in primate brains.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/08/180827180809.htm)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Tank on August 28, 2018, 10:59:13 AM
Interesting study.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 28, 2018, 02:55:47 PM
That's cool, but Nature Neuroscience? That's an excellent journal and all, but Cell has a way higher impact factor, I wonder if they tried to submit their paper to that journal. :notsure:

They probably did, I think it's safe to say that everyone wants to see their paper published in Cell.  :P
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on August 30, 2018, 09:04:00 PM
Another potential new method for the control of epilectic seizures:

QuoteElectrophoretic drug delivery for seizure control
[...]
Here, we present an electrophoretic drug delivery device based on the organic electronic ion pump (OEIP), which offers the ability to deliver drugs with precise spatiotemporal control (13, 14). In contrast to other drug delivery devices, the ion pump works by electrophoretically pumping ions across an ion exchange membrane and thereby delivers only the drug of interest and not the solvent (aside from a few water molecules per ion that make up the hydration shell).
[...]

http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/4/8/eaau1291

Seemingly the implant system monitors brain activity and, on cue, delivers the drugs to the specific area via electrical potentials through a permeable membrane. Works in the animal model.

It seems there may be potential for the treatment of Parkinsonism as well.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 02, 2018, 03:05:46 PM
Quote from: Dave on August 30, 2018, 09:04:00 PM
Another potential new method for the control of epilectic seizures:

QuoteElectrophoretic drug delivery for seizure control
[...]
Here, we present an electrophoretic drug delivery device based on the organic electronic ion pump (OEIP), which offers the ability to deliver drugs with precise spatiotemporal control (13, 14). In contrast to other drug delivery devices, the ion pump works by electrophoretically pumping ions across an ion exchange membrane and thereby delivers only the drug of interest and not the solvent (aside from a few water molecules per ion that make up the hydration shell).
[...]

http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/4/8/eaau1291

Seemingly the implant system monitors brain activity and, on cue, delivers the drugs to the specific area via electrical potentials through a permeable membrane. Works in the animal model.

It seems there may be potential for the treatment of Parkinsonism as well.

Looks like pharmacology is biting back at optogenetics! :lol:

Thanks Dave, I've shared that article with my labmates. 

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dave on September 21, 2018, 12:20:31 PM
QuoteScience of Addiction

The Science Gallery London at Kings College London, right under the Shard, is a brand new venue for the collision of art, science and culture, and its opening exhibition is called Hooked, a series of installations and works by people who have experienced addiction.

Adam Rutherford explores the neuroscience, the psychology and the epidemiology of addiction; what the latest research says about what addiction is, and how that can help us treat people experiencing addiction. He discusses these questions with psychologist Dr Sally Marlow and neurologist Professor Mitul Mehta who are both at Kings College and have been involved in the exhibition, and Dr Suzi Gage from Liverpool University who studies the epidemiology of addiction. He also talks to the curator of Hooked, Hannah Redler Hawes, and to two of the Science Gallery Young Leaders, Elly Magson and Mandeep Singh, who show him a couple of the exhibits.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/play/b0bk1c4s
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 26, 2018, 09:12:45 PM
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on September 29, 2018, 12:05:55 AM
Fascinating video Silver. Who knew that the  dragonfly is such an efficient predator?   More importantly, who knew that we could plot the brain input of what we generally think of as a bug? 

So much to learn, so little time.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 30, 2018, 05:10:27 PM
Quote from: Icarus on September 29, 2018, 12:05:55 AM
Fascinating video Silver. Who knew that the  dragonfly is such an efficient predator?   More importantly, who knew that we could plot the brain input of what we generally think of as a bug? 

So much to learn, so little time.

Indeed. Scary little critters, aren't they? :o

Little hunting machines.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on October 17, 2018, 03:02:36 PM
Apparently dogs "listen harder" when their humans say words the dogs don't know. The study described below also provided scientific evidence for something that dog people have known for a very long time--dogs are capable of learning the meaning of words at least to a limited extent, rather than simply responding in a "Pavlovian" way to the words.

Still, the scientist's studies provide evidence that dogs respond more readily to visual cues such as gestures. This is another thing that dog people have known for a long time. I recall travelling with a friend and his dog. He always had trouble getting his dog to jump into the truck with a vocal command. I was able to show him that a sweeping gesture of the hand from thigh level up toward the open door (in combination with the command he'd been using--"Brutus, up!") got an immediate response from the dog, who readily jumped in.

"Scientists chase mystery of how dogs process words" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/10/181015120901.htm)

QuoteWhen some dogs hear their owners say "squirrel," they perk up, become agitated. They may even run to a window and look out of it. But what does the word mean to the dog? Does it mean, "Pay attention, something is happening?" Or does the dog actually picture a small, bushy-tailed rodent in its mind?

Frontiers in Neuroscience published one of the first studies using brain imaging to probe how our canine companions process words they have been taught to associate with objects, conducted by scientists at Emory University. The results suggest that dogs have at least a rudimentary neural representation of meaning for words they have been taught, differentiating words they have heard before from those they have not.

"Many dog owners think that their dogs know what some words mean, but there really isn't much scientific evidence to support that," says Ashley Prichard, a PhD candidate in Emory's Department of Psychology and first author of the study. "We wanted to get data from the dogs themselves -- not just owner reports."

"We know that dogs have the capacity to process at least some aspects of human language since they can learn to follow verbal commands," adds Emory neuroscientist Gregory Berns, senior author of the study. "Previous research, however, suggests dogs may rely on many other cues to follow a verbal command, such as gaze, gestures and even emotional expressions from their owners."

The Emory researchers focused on questions surrounding the brain mechanisms dogs use to differentiate between words, or even what constitutes a word to a dog.

Berns is founder of the Dog Project, which is researching evolutionary questions surrounding man's best, and oldest friend. The project was the first to train dogs to voluntarily enter a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanner and remain motionless during scanning, without restraint or sedation. Studies by the Dog Project have furthered understanding of dogs' neural response to expected reward, identified specialized areas in the dog brain for processing faces, demonstrated olfactory responses to human and dog odors, and linked prefrontal function to inhibitory control.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/10/181015120901.htm)]

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on October 18, 2018, 12:44:30 AM
My little dog Scooter is an Australian Shepherd.  He is 18 years old and stone deaf.  He and I communicate rather well by hand signals alone.  He responds to signals and if he disagrees he will vocalize.  We have that stuff covered and I am proud of his ability to adapt.

One of my previous Aussies was named Sailor.  We were inseparable.  Sailor was so good at signals that a mere movement of my eyes could send him left or right, finger movement could send him in or out.  Sailor left me tearfully heartbroken when he was about eleven.

Eighteen is beyond the life expectancy of most dogs.  Somehow "the Scoot" has hung in there and continues to cost plenty of money for periodic vet bills which I cheerfully pay.  He is my pal. . So far so good.  The little dude is perfectly mobile and remains a chow hound. 

One of these days I will have to do what I have to do with my best friend. I have been a lifetime dog guy but I cannot, in good conscience,  contemplate having another dog.  That is because I do not want to have my next companion feel abandoned because I have died before him or her.  I reckon I could have a Great Dane whose life expectancy is about eight years and I will manage to make it past 96 or more......or not. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Tank on October 18, 2018, 06:32:22 AM
Quote from: Icarus on October 18, 2018, 12:44:30 AM
My little dog Scooter is an Australian Shepherd.  He is 18 years old and stone deaf.  He and I communicate rather well by hand signals alone.  He responds to signals and if he disagrees he will vocalize.  We have that stuff covered and I am proud of his ability to adapt.

One of my previous Aussies was named Sailor.  We were inseparable.  Sailor was so good at signals that a mere movement of my eyes could send him left or right, finger movement could send him in or out.  Sailor left me tearfully heartbroken when he was about eleven.

Eighteen is beyond the life expectancy of most dogs.  Somehow "the Scoot" has hung in there and continues to cost plenty of money for periodic vet bills which I cheerfully pay.  He is my pal. . So far so good.  The little dude is perfectly mobile and remains a chow hound. 

One of these days I will have to do what I have to do with my best friend. I have been a lifetime dog guy but I cannot, in good conscience,  contemplate having another dog.  That is because I do not want to have my next companion feel abandoned because I have died before him or her.  I reckon I could have a Great Dane whose life expectancy is about eight years and I will manage to make it past 96 or more......or not.

You don't have to start with a puppy.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on October 20, 2018, 01:30:54 AM
That is a valid observation Tank. There are plenty of damn good dogs at the shelter who need my care and friendship.   

Somewhere on or about Sept. 11 2001 I adopted a Bernese Mountain dog from the SPCA shelter. He was about 4 years old at that time.  He had been with three other families who abandoned him for whatever unfortunate reason. Teddy gave me the best years of his life and he was my constant and dedicated companion.  He lasted for about six years and I can still become tearful when I think of him. Like now. ............So maybe an older dog could be my new companion..............sure as hell he/she would be grateful for my attention and care. That's what good dogs do.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on October 20, 2018, 01:45:29 AM
Quote from: Recusant on October 17, 2018, 03:02:36 PM
Apparently dogs "listen harder" when their humans say words the dogs don't know. The study described below also provided scientific evidence for something that dog people have known for a very long time--dogs are capable of learning the meaning of words at least to a limited extent, rather than simply responding in a "Pavlovian" way to the words.

Still, the scientist's studies provide evidence that dogs respond more readily to visual cues such as gestures. This is another thing that dog people have known for a long time. I recall travelling with a friend and his dog. He always had trouble getting his dog to jump into the truck with a vocal command. I was able to show him that a sweeping gesture of the hand from thigh level up toward the open door (in combination with the command he'd been using--"Brutus, up!") got an immediate response from the dog, who readily jumped in.

"Scientists chase mystery of how dogs process words" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/10/181015120901.htm)

QuoteWhen some dogs hear their owners say "squirrel," they perk up, become agitated. They may even run to a window and look out of it. But what does the word mean to the dog? Does it mean, "Pay attention, something is happening?" Or does the dog actually picture a small, bushy-tailed rodent in its mind?

Frontiers in Neuroscience published one of the first studies using brain imaging to probe how our canine companions process words they have been taught to associate with objects, conducted by scientists at Emory University. The results suggest that dogs have at least a rudimentary neural representation of meaning for words they have been taught, differentiating words they have heard before from those they have not.

"Many dog owners think that their dogs know what some words mean, but there really isn't much scientific evidence to support that," says Ashley Prichard, a PhD candidate in Emory's Department of Psychology and first author of the study. "We wanted to get data from the dogs themselves -- not just owner reports."

"We know that dogs have the capacity to process at least some aspects of human language since they can learn to follow verbal commands," adds Emory neuroscientist Gregory Berns, senior author of the study. "Previous research, however, suggests dogs may rely on many other cues to follow a verbal command, such as gaze, gestures and even emotional expressions from their owners."

The Emory researchers focused on questions surrounding the brain mechanisms dogs use to differentiate between words, or even what constitutes a word to a dog.

Berns is founder of the Dog Project, which is researching evolutionary questions surrounding man's best, and oldest friend. The project was the first to train dogs to voluntarily enter a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanner and remain motionless during scanning, without restraint or sedation. Studies by the Dog Project have furthered understanding of dogs' neural response to expected reward, identified specialized areas in the dog brain for processing faces, demonstrated olfactory responses to human and dog odors, and linked prefrontal function to inhibitory control.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/10/181015120901.htm)]

Cool link, Recusant! Nice to see what dog owners always knew get some corroborating scientific evidence.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on November 05, 2018, 03:33:48 PM
Here's an article that puts forward the idea that consciousness is produced by an ongoing complex feedback loop of energy in the brain. The paper written by the author of the article is also linked below.

"How a trippy 1980s video effect might help to explain consciousness" | The Conversation (https://theconversation.com/how-a-trippy-1980s-video-effect-might-help-to-explain-consciousness-105256)

QuoteExplaining consciousness is one of the hardest problems in science and philosophy. Recent neuroscientific discoveries suggest that a solution could be within reach – but grasping it will mean rethinking some familiar ideas. Consciousness, I argue in a new paper (https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2018.02091/full), may be caused by the way the brain generates loops of energetic feedback, similar to the video feedback (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_feedback) that "blossoms" when a video camera is pointed at its own output.

I first saw video feedback in the late 1980s and was instantly entranced. Someone plugged the signal from a clunky video camera into a TV and pointed the lens at the screen, creating a grainy spiralling tunnel. Then the camera was tilted slightly and the tunnel blossomed into a pulsating organic kaleidoscope.

Video feedback is a classic example of complex dynamical behaviour (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamical_systems_theory). It arises from the way energy circulating in the system interacts chaotically with the electronic components of the hardware.

[. . .]

(https://images.theconversation.com/files/242563/original/file-20181026-7041-1iu7wpb.gif?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&q=45&auto=format&w=754&fit=clip)
Video feedback may be the nearest we have to visualising what conscious processing in the brain is like.
Still from video feedback sequence. Image Credit: Robert Pepperell, 2018

[Continues . . . (https://theconversation.com/how-a-trippy-1980s-video-effect-might-help-to-explain-consciousness-105256)]

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on November 05, 2018, 06:59:11 PM
^ An interesting idea.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on November 05, 2018, 07:26:28 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on November 05, 2018, 06:59:11 PM
^ An interesting idea.

:sidesmile: I am a happy pup.

(https://img.buzzfeed.com/buzzfeed-static/static/enhanced/webdr02/2012/12/15/17/anigif_enhanced-buzz-1752-1355608896-6.gif?)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on November 05, 2018, 10:27:29 PM
Quote from: Recusant on November 05, 2018, 07:26:28 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on November 05, 2018, 06:59:11 PM
^ An interesting idea.

:sidesmile: I am a happy pup.

(https://img.buzzfeed.com/buzzfeed-static/static/enhanced/webdr02/2012/12/15/17/anigif_enhanced-buzz-1752-1355608896-6.gif?)

:grin:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on November 06, 2018, 10:52:40 PM
Superdog who is happy to do his thing.  Note the wagging tail.   That gif makes me smile
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on November 07, 2018, 08:39:51 PM
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on February 26, 2019, 01:43:34 AM
Great progress if accurate. Now to find some way to address it.

"Brain discovery explains a great mystery of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/02/190215135835.htm)

QuoteOne of the great mysteries of neuroscience may finally have an answer: Scientists at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have identified a potential explanation for the mysterious death of specific brain cells seen in Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases.

The new research suggests that the cells may die because of naturally occurring gene variation in brain cells that were, until recently, assumed to be genetically identical. This variation -- called "somatic mosaicism" -- could explain why neurons in the temporal lobe are the first to die in Alzheimer's, for example, and why dopaminergic neurons are the first to die in Parkinson's.

"This has been a big open question in neuroscience, particularly in various neurodegenerative diseases," said neuroscientist Michael McConnell, PhD, of UVA's Center for Brain Immunology and Glia (BIG). "What is this selective vulnerability? What underlies it? And so now, with our work, the hypotheses moving forward are that it could be that different regions of the brain actually have a different garden of these [variations] in young individuals and that sets up different regions for decline later in life."

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/02/190215135835.htm)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on March 03, 2019, 09:26:20 PM
Here is a discussion about handedness, that is left handed/right handed and how brain regions may influence the preferences.
https://getpocket.com/explore/item/the-evolutionary-mystery-of-left-handedness-and-what-it-reveals-about-how-the-brain-works.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on March 04, 2019, 04:03:22 PM
Thanks for posting that link, Icarus. The author mentions a Scots fighter from the Kerr family. In my reading about the history of the Borders, I read about the Kerrs, who were a fairly prominent family. They were known for being left-handed, which points to some degree of heritability. On the other hand ( ;) ) the article mentions the example of Charles Darwin, a left-handed man who married a left-handed woman, yet only two of their ten children were left-handed. In my own family there is a couple who are both left-handed, while both of their children are right-handed.

A story in which the functions of the two hemispheres of the brain is examined (the site apparently puts up a paywall after one article unless you sign up, but should be accessible):

"The Brain That Remade Itself" | OneZero (https://onezero.medium.com/the-brain-that-remade-itself-bcc7b3a43cff)

Quote[Tanner] Collins was three months shy of seven years old when surgeons sliced open his skull and removed a third of his brain's right hemisphere. For two years prior, a benign tumor had been growing in the back of his brain, eventually reaching the size of a golf ball. The tumor caused a series of disruptive seizures that gave him migraines and kept him from school. Medications did little to treat the problem and made Collins drowsy. By the day of his surgery, Collins was experiencing daily seizures that were growing in severity. He would collapse and be incontinent and sometimes vomit, he says.

[. . .]

Surgeons cut out the entire right occipital lobe and half of the temporal lobe of Collins' brain. Those lobes are important for processing the information that passes through our eyes' optic nerves, allowing us to see. These regions are also critical for recognizing faces and objects and attaching corresponding names. There was no way of being sure whether Collins would ever see again, recognize his parents, or even develop normally after the surgery.

And then the miraculous happened: Despite the loss of more than 15 percent of his brain, Collins turned out to be fine.

The one exception is the loss of peripheral vision in his left eye. Though this means Collins will never legally be able to drive, he compensates for his blind spot by moving his head around, scanning a room to create a complete picture. "It's not like it's blurred or it's just black there. It's, like, all blended," Collins tells me when I visit him at home in January. "So, it's like a Bob Ross painting."

Today, Collins is a critical puzzle piece in an ongoing study of how the human brain can change. That's because his brain has done something remarkable: The left side has assumed all the responsibilities and tasks of his now largely missing right side.

[Continues . . . (https://onezero.medium.com/the-brain-that-remade-itself-bcc7b3a43cff)]

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on March 06, 2019, 12:12:52 AM
Here is some more "brain stuff" with  slightly different implications.   https://getpocket.com/explore/item/secrets-of-the-creative-brain

Since all we HAFers have clearly superior creative brain functions, we may all be destined to reside in the loony bin.   :query:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on March 06, 2019, 01:13:02 PM
Quote from: Icarus on March 06, 2019, 12:12:52 AM
Here is some more "brain stuff" with  slightly different implications.   https://getpocket.com/explore/item/secrets-of-the-creative-brain

Since all we HAFers have clearly superior creative brain functions, we may all be destined to reside in the loony bin.   :query:

Very interesting, Icarus!  :studious:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on March 26, 2019, 03:20:00 PM
Posting a link here to a story mentioned by Icarus in another thread:

"Breakthrough brain implant harnesses mind power to help paralysed people gain more independence" | ABC (https://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-05-22/brain-implant-helps-paralysed-people-gain-independence/6491398)

QuoteA new kind of brain implant that can sense a patient's intent to move a robotic arm is being hailed as a breakthrough in harnessing mind power to help paralysed people gain more independence.

A study in the journal Science has reported on the technology, which uses electrodes implanted in the brain to transmit signals to a computer and translate those signals into instructions for a robotic arm.

For people like Erik Sorto, who was left paralysed from the neck down when he was shot in the back more than a decade ago, it means he is finally able to drink a beverage by himself.

"That was amazing. I was waiting for that for 13 years, to drink a beer by myself," he said.

[Continues . . . (https://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-05-22/brain-implant-helps-paralysed-people-gain-independence/6491398)]





Another link, this time about a newly developed taxonomy of brain cells.

"An Objective Classification Algorithm For Brain Cells" | Reliawire (https://reliawire.com/cortical-morphological-classify/)

QuoteA new system for distinguishing cell types in the brain, has been announced by the Blue Brain Project. It represents an algorithmic classification method that the researchers say will benefit the entire field of neuroscience.

QuoteFor nearly 100 years, scientists have been trying to name cells. They have been describing them in the same way that Darwin described animals and trees. Now, the Blue Brain Project has developed a mathematical algorithm to objectively classify the shapes of the neurons in the brain. This will allow the development of a standardized taxonomy [classification of cells into distinct groups] of all cells in the brain, which will help researchers compare their data in a more reliable manner.

[. . .]

The team, led by Lida Kanari of École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, developed an algorithm to distinguish the shapes of the most common type of neuron in the neocortex, the pyramidal cells.

Pyramidal cells are distinctively tree-like cells that make up 80 percent of the neurons in the neocortex, and like antennas, collect information from other neurons in the brain. Basically, they are the redwoods of the brain forest. They are excitatory, sending waves of electrical activity through the network, as people perceive, act, and feel.

[. . .]

Blue Brain has pioneered the use of algebraic topology to tackle a wide range of neuroscience problems, and with this study, has once again demonstrated its effectiveness. In collaboration with Professors Kathryn Hess at EPFL and Ran Levi from the University of Aberdeen, Blue Brain developed an algorithm for objectively classifying 17 types of pyramidal cells in the rat somatosensory cortex.

The topological classification, which uses a new subfield of algebraic topology called topological data analysis, does not require expert input, and is proven to be robust.

[Continues . . . (https://reliawire.com/cortical-morphological-classify/)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on March 26, 2019, 04:46:33 PM
^ :popcorn:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 03, 2019, 05:11:37 PM
"Memory editing from science fiction to clinical practice"

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-019-1433-7?fbclid=IwAR0Qx6F9HoBkSMRGnSYEkdA1_Vv_EAVEKBQ2iBsPWDnf9hXP_woPjCr-qqk (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-019-1433-7?fbclid=IwAR0Qx6F9HoBkSMRGnSYEkdA1_Vv_EAVEKBQ2iBsPWDnf9hXP_woPjCr-qqk)


QuoteScience fiction notions of altering problematic memories are starting to become reality as techniques emerge through which unique memories can be edited. Here we review memory-editing research with a focus on improving the treatment of psychopathology. Studies highlight two windows of memory vulnerability: initial storage, or consolidation; and re-storage after retrieval, or reconsolidation. Techniques have been identified that can modify memories at each stage, but translating these methods from animal models to humans has been challenging and implementation into clinical therapies has produced inconsistent benefits. The science of memory editing is more complicated and nuanced than fiction, but its rapid development holds promise for future applications.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: joeactor on August 10, 2019, 12:29:03 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on August 03, 2019, 05:11:37 PM
"Memory editing from science fiction to clinical practice"

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-019-1433-7?fbclid=IwAR0Qx6F9HoBkSMRGnSYEkdA1_Vv_EAVEKBQ2iBsPWDnf9hXP_woPjCr-qqk (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-019-1433-7?fbclid=IwAR0Qx6F9HoBkSMRGnSYEkdA1_Vv_EAVEKBQ2iBsPWDnf9hXP_woPjCr-qqk)


QuoteScience fiction notions of altering problematic memories are starting to become reality as techniques emerge through which unique memories can be edited. Here we review memory-editing research with a focus on improving the treatment of psychopathology. Studies highlight two windows of memory vulnerability: initial storage, or consolidation; and re-storage after retrieval, or reconsolidation. Techniques have been identified that can modify memories at each stage, but translating these methods from animal models to humans has been challenging and implementation into clinical therapies has produced inconsistent benefits. The science of memory editing is more complicated and nuanced than fiction, but its rapid development holds promise for future applications.

Both promising and frightening...
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on September 05, 2019, 01:53:06 AM
Interesting brain stuff here.


https://getpocket.com/explore/item/what-time-feels-like-when-you-re-improvising?utm_source=pocket-newtab
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on September 12, 2019, 12:38:13 AM
This bit examines dreams and what is going on in the brain while dreaming.

https://elemental.medium.com/what-happens-in-the-brain-when-youre-dreaming-7c0687c38d3
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Ecurb Noselrub on September 12, 2019, 05:44:39 PM
Quote from: Icarus on September 12, 2019, 12:38:13 AM
This bit examines dreams and what is going on in the brain while dreaming.

https://elemental.medium.com/what-happens-in-the-brain-when-youre-dreaming-7c0687c38d3

Very interesting.  I've often thought that in dreams the mind is taking the experiences of the day and weaving them into some story that tries to make sense of things, even in a bizarre fashion. The brain is so complex.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on December 24, 2019, 10:24:15 PM
I suppose the idea that mammals use the same general location in the brain to process our perception of numbers would not be particularly controversial.  ;)

"Dogs process numerical quantities in similar brain region as humans" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/12/191218153339.htm)

QuoteDogs spontaneously process basic numerical quantities, using a distinct part of their brains that corresponds closely to number-responsive neural regions in humans, finds a study at Emory University.

Biology Letters published the results, which suggest that a common neural mechanism has been deeply conserved across mammalian evolution.

"Our work not only shows that dogs use a similar part of their brain to process numbers of objects as humans do -- it shows that they don't need to be trained to do it," says Gregory Berns, Emory professor of psychology and senior author of the study.

"Understanding neural mechanisms -- both in humans and across species -- gives us insights into both how our brains evolved over time and how they function now," says co-author Stella Lourenco, an associate professor of psychology at Emory.

Such insights, Lourenco adds, may one day lead to practical applications such as treating brain abnormalities and improving artificial intelligence systems.

Lauren Aulet, a PhD candidate in Lourenco's lab, is first author of the study.

The study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan dogs' brains as they viewed varying numbers of dots flashed on a screen. The results showed that the dogs' parietotemporal cortex responded to differences in the number of the dots. The researchers held the total area of the dots constant, demonstrating that it was the number of the dots, not the size, that generated the response.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/12/191218153339.htm)]

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on December 24, 2019, 10:33:43 PM
Quote from: Recusant on December 24, 2019, 10:24:15 PM
I suppose the idea that mammals use the same general location in the brain to process our perception of numbers would not be particularly controversial.  ;)

"Dogs process numerical quantities in similar brain region as humans" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/12/191218153339.htm)

QuoteDogs spontaneously process basic numerical quantities, using a distinct part of their brains that corresponds closely to number-responsive neural regions in humans, finds a study at Emory University.

Biology Letters published the results, which suggest that a common neural mechanism has been deeply conserved across mammalian evolution.

"Our work not only shows that dogs use a similar part of their brain to process numbers of objects as humans do -- it shows that they don't need to be trained to do it," says Gregory Berns, Emory professor of psychology and senior author of the study.

"Understanding neural mechanisms -- both in humans and across species -- gives us insights into both how our brains evolved over time and how they function now," says co-author Stella Lourenco, an associate professor of psychology at Emory.

Such insights, Lourenco adds, may one day lead to practical applications such as treating brain abnormalities and improving artificial intelligence systems.

Lauren Aulet, a PhD candidate in Lourenco's lab, is first author of the study.

The study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan dogs' brains as they viewed varying numbers of dots flashed on a screen. The results showed that the dogs' parietotemporal cortex responded to differences in the number of the dots. The researchers held the total area of the dots constant, demonstrating that it was the number of the dots, not the size, that generated the response.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/12/191218153339.htm)]

That's interesting!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on January 06, 2020, 01:35:51 AM
They can see the mice's memories! Sort of.

"Engrams emerging as the basic unit of memory" | EurekAlert! (https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-01/piam-eea010220.php)

Quote
(https://media.eurekalert.org/multimedia_prod/pub/web/220668_web.jpg)
Memory engram cells labeled green and red in the prefrontal cortex of a mouse.
Image credit: Takashi Kitamura




Though scientist Richard Semon introduced the concept of the "engram" 115 years ago to posit a neural basis for memory, direct evidence for engrams has only begun to accumulate recently as sophisticated technologies and methods have become available. In a new review in Science, Professors Susumu Tonegawa of The Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT and Sheena Josselyn of the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and the University of Toronto describe the rapid progress they and colleagues have been making over the last dozen years in identifying, characterizing and even manipulating engrams, as well as the major outstanding questions of the field.

Experiments in rodents have revealed that engrams exist as multiscale networks of neurons. An experience becomes stored as a potentially retrievable memory in the brain when excited neurons in a brain region such as the hippocampus or amygdala become recruited into a local ensemble. These ensembles combine with others in other regions, such as the cortex, into an "engram complex." Crucial to this process of linking engram cells is the ability of neurons to forge new circuit connections, via processes known as "synaptic plasticity" and "dendritic spine formation." Importantly, experiments show that the memory initially stored across an engram complex can be retrieved by its reactivation but may also persist "silently" even when memories cannot be naturally recalled, for instance in mouse models used to study memory disorders such as early stage Alzheimer's disease.

[Continues . . . (https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-01/piam-eea010220.php)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on January 06, 2020, 01:54:25 AM
Sheena A. Josselyn and Susumu Tonegawa (Nobel Prize laureate) are two big names in the field. I know plenty of people who do not agree with Tonegawa's conclusions (that he found the engram) in any of his papers. What the engram is and where it can be found is still a matter of debate.

But it's an interesting review! I have sent the link to my labmates. :grin:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on January 24, 2020, 06:30:37 AM
The most highly detailed map (connectome (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Connectome)) to date of part of a fruit fly's brain has been constructed. I don't know that the scientists who worked on this project who were not Google employees would appreciate the credit going to Google, but I suppose it makes for a more attention-grabbing headline.



"Google just created the most detailed image of a brain yet" | LiveScience (https://www.livescience.com/fruit-fly-high-resolution-brain-connectivity.html)

QuoteScientists have created the most detailed 3D map of an organism brain to date. The mesmerizing threads of blue, yellow, purple and green represent thousands of brain cells and millions of connections found inside the brain of a fruit fly.

This high-resolution map, known as a "connectome," only makes up one-third of a fruit fly's brain but includes a large region involved in learning, navigation, smell and vision. Scientists found over 4,000 different types of neurons, including those involved in the fly's circadian rhythm — or internal clock — that might help researchers learn a bit more about how the insect sleeps, according to the publicly released data (https://www.janelia.org/project-team/flyem/hemibrain).

This map, a collaboration between scientists at Google and the Janelia Research Campus in Virginia, took two years to create. The team started out by cutting a fruit fly brain into extremely thin slices using a hot knife — and then imaging each slice under an electron microscope. Afterward, they stitched the images together to create a large map, tracing the paths of the neurons through the brain, according to the statement.

[Continues . . . (https://www.livescience.com/fruit-fly-high-resolution-brain-connectivity.html)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on January 30, 2020, 01:18:14 PM
Quote from: Recusant on January 24, 2020, 06:30:37 AM
The most highly detailed map (connectome (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Connectome)) to date of part of a fruit fly's brain has been constructed. I don't know that the scientists who worked on this project who were not Google employees would appreciate the credit going to Google, but I suppose it makes for a more attention-grabbing headline.



"Google just created the most detailed image of a brain yet" | LiveScience (https://www.livescience.com/fruit-fly-high-resolution-brain-connectivity.html)

QuoteScientists have created the most detailed 3D map of an organism brain to date. The mesmerizing threads of blue, yellow, purple and green represent thousands of brain cells and millions of connections found inside the brain of a fruit fly.

This high-resolution map, known as a "connectome," only makes up one-third of a fruit fly's brain but includes a large region involved in learning, navigation, smell and vision. Scientists found over 4,000 different types of neurons, including those involved in the fly's circadian rhythm — or internal clock — that might help researchers learn a bit more about how the insect sleeps, according to the publicly released data (https://www.janelia.org/project-team/flyem/hemibrain).

This map, a collaboration between scientists at Google and the Janelia Research Campus in Virginia, took two years to create. The team started out by cutting a fruit fly brain into extremely thin slices using a hot knife — and then imaging each slice under an electron microscope. Afterward, they stitched the images together to create a large map, tracing the paths of the neurons through the brain, according to the statement.

[Continues . . . (https://www.livescience.com/fruit-fly-high-resolution-brain-connectivity.html)]

Next we'll be seeing Google Brain Maps.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on January 30, 2020, 02:55:29 PM
 :snicker: Thinking about Google's interest in this, I'm guessing that it's related to their development of AI.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on February 06, 2020, 09:24:56 PM
Quote from: Recusant on January 30, 2020, 02:55:29 PM
:snicker: Thinking about Google's interest in this, I'm guessing that it's related to their development of AI.

That makes sense.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on March 03, 2020, 05:48:46 PM
Human brains are asymmetrical in specific ways. This study shows that other great apes display a similar brain asymmetry.

"Researchers Were Not Right About Left Brains, Study Suggests" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200214144339.htm)

QuoteThe left and right side of the brain are involved in different tasks. This functional lateralization and associated brain asymmetry are well documented in humans, but little is known about brain asymmetry in our closest living relatives, the great apes. Using endocasts (imprints of the brain on cranial bones), scientists now challenge the long-held notion that the human pattern of brain asymmetry is unique. They found the same asymmetry pattern in chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans. However, humans were the most variable in this pattern. This suggests that lateralized, uniquely human cognitive abilities, such as language, evolved by adapting a presumably ancestral asymmetry pattern.

[. . .]

Brain asymmetry is commonly interpreted as crucial for human brain function and cognition because it reflects functional lateralization. However, comparative studies among primates are rare and it is not known which aspects of brain asymmetry are really uniquely human. Based on previously available data, scientists assumed that many aspects of brain asymmetry evolved only recently, after the split between the human lineage from the lineage of our closest living relatives, the chimpanzees.

In a new paper researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology and the University of Vienna measured the magnitude and pattern of shape asymmetry of endocasts from humans and apes. "Great ape brains are rarely available for study, but we have developed methods to extract brain asymmetry data from skulls, which are easier to access. This made our study possible in the first place," says lead author Simon Neubauer.

The team found that the magnitude of asymmetry was about the same in humans and most great apes. Only chimpanzees were, on average, less asymmetric than humans, gorillas, and orangutans. They also investigated the pattern of asymmetry and could demonstrate that not only humans, but also chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans showed the asymmetry pattern previously described as typically human: the left occipital lobe, the right frontal lobe, as well as the right temporal pole and the right cerebellar lobe projecting more relatively to their contralateral parts. "What surprised us even more," says Philipp Mitteroecker, a co-author of the study, "was that humans were least consistent in this asymmetry with a lot of individual variation around the most common pattern." The authors interpret this as a sign of increased functional and developmental modularization of the human brain. For example, the differential projections of the occipital lobe and the cerebellum are less correlated in humans than in great apes. This finding is interesting because the cerebellum in humans underwent dramatic evolutionary changes and it seems that thereby its asymmetry was affected as well.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200214144339.htm)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on March 08, 2020, 03:12:13 AM
Never heard the technical name before, but "spindle neuron" sounds familiar. Some people poked them with ultra-fine tubes of glass, and learned things.  ;)

"Scientists Just Took a Closer Look at an Incredibly Rare Human Brain Cell Type" | ScienceAlert (https://www.sciencealert.com/the-first-electrical-activity-has-been-recorded-from-a-rare-human-brain-cell)

QuoteYou'd be forgiven if you haven't heard of von Economo neurons (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spindle_neuron) (VENs) or spindle neurons, a rare type of human brain cell. But these cells are now at the centre of an exciting scientific development: researchers have recorded their electrical activity for the first time.

The discovery was made possible due to a delicate and demanding analysis carried out on brain cells donated to science by a Seattle woman in her 60s, who agreed to donate tissue removed during surgery on a brain tumour.

Unlike many other types of neurons, VENs aren't found in rodent lab animals such as mice and rats; they're even difficult to find in human brains, which means studying these elusive cells is a serious challenge.

"At this point we're really in the descriptive phase of understanding these neurons," says neurobiologist Ed Lein (https://alleninstitute.org/what-we-do/brain-science/news-press/articles/new-clues-about-huge-rare-human-brain-cell), from the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Washington. "There are still many remaining mysteries."

VENs are large and spindle-shaped (hence their alternative name), and are found in just three small regions of the brain. They also show up in great apes, whales, dolphins, cows and elephants, suggesting their presence could have something to do with being a social animal, or an animal with a larger brain in general.

People who get older without suffering the usual memory loss have been noted to have more VENs than normal; on the flip side, certain brain diseases seem to be associated with a loss of these types of neurons.

All of these factors have made VENs an intriguing subject for study - if only we could get a closer look at them more regularly.

In this case, the researchers had to hunt through thin slices of brain tissue to find the right neurons, and then carefully puncture them without breaking the outer membrane of the cells – an operation that allows electrical signals to then be captured. It wasn't easy.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/the-first-electrical-activity-has-been-recorded-from-a-rare-human-brain-cell)]

The full paper is available: "Transcriptomic evidence that von Economo neurons are regionally specialized extratelencephalic-projecting excitatory neurons" | Nature (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-020-14952-3)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on March 09, 2020, 02:28:16 PM
I've seen a picture of spindle neurons... calling them "spindle shaped" takes a pretty good imagination. Mine failed. They remind more of a tree stump and its roots, but "stump neurons" is probably not as catchy. Good read though, maybe with some more study they can eventually develop something to prevent their loss.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on April 28, 2020, 05:45:59 PM
I don't like to make fun of mental or neurological illnesses so I didn't post this in any of the zombie, COVID or political threads, but you want to see something truly strange, look up Cotard's Syndrome. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cotard_delusion)   :spooked:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on April 29, 2020, 05:16:16 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on April 28, 2020, 05:45:59 PM
I don't like to make fun of mental or neurological illnesses so I didn't post this in any of the zombie, COVID or political threads, but you want to see something truly strange, look up Cotard's Syndrome. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cotard_delusion)   :spooked:

Sounds highly unpleasant.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on May 02, 2020, 10:56:42 PM
According to this study, the precursors of the arcuate fasciculus (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arcuate_fasciculus) (a part of the brain that is important to human use of language) appeared much earlier than had been thought.

"Origins of human language pathway in the brain at least 25 million years old" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/04/200420125519.htm)

QuoteScientists have discovered an earlier origin to the human language pathway in the brain, pushing back its evolutionary origin by at least 20 million years.

Previously, a precursor of the language pathway was thought by many scientists to have emerged more recently, about 5 million years ago, with a common ancestor of both apes and humans.

For neuroscientists, this is comparable to finding a fossil that illuminates evolutionary history. However, unlike bones, brains did not fossilize. Instead neuroscientists need to infer what the brains of common ancestors may have been like by studying brain scans of living primates and comparing them to humans.

Professor Chris Petkov from the Faculty of Medical Sciences, Newcastle University, UK the study lead said: "It is like finding a new fossil of a long lost ancestor. It is also exciting that there may be an older origin yet to be discovered still."

The international teams of European and US scientists carried out the brain imaging study and analysis of auditory regions and brain pathways in humans, apes and monkeys which is published in Nature Neuroscience.

They discovered a segment of this language pathway in the human brain that interconnects the auditory cortex with frontal lobe regions, important for processing speech and language. Although speech and language are unique to humans, the link via the auditory pathway in other primates suggests an evolutionary basis in auditory cognition and vocal communication.

Professor Petkov added: "We predicted but could not know for sure whether the human language pathway may have had an evolutionary basis in the auditory system of nonhuman primates. I admit we were astounded to see a similar pathway hiding in plain sight within the auditory system of nonhuman primates."

The study also illuminates the remarkable transformation of the human language pathway. A key human unique difference was found: the human left side of this brain pathway was stronger and the right side appears to have diverged from the auditory evolutionary prototype to involve non-auditory parts of the brain.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/04/200420125519.htm)]

Hat-tip  :boaterhat: to xSilverPhinx for the following link to the full paper:

"Primate auditory prototype in the evolution of the arcuate fasciculus" | Nature Research (https://www.researchgate.net/publication/340792504_Primate_auditory_prototype_in_the_evolution_of_the_arcuate_fasciculus)


Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on May 02, 2020, 11:39:52 PM
It's just amazing that they can pick that information out of a fossil. Some smart people there!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 12:59:48 AM
Quote from: Recusant on May 02, 2020, 10:56:42 PM
I was unable to find an open access version of the paper.

Can you visualize it using this link?

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/340792504_Primate_auditory_prototype_in_the_evolution_of_the_arcuate_fasciculus (https://www.researchgate.net/publication/340792504_Primate_auditory_prototype_in_the_evolution_of_the_arcuate_fasciculus)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on May 03, 2020, 02:06:51 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 12:59:48 AM
Quote from: Recusant on May 02, 2020, 10:56:42 PM
I was unable to find an open access version of the paper.

Can you visualize it using this link?

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/340792504_Primate_auditory_prototype_in_the_evolution_of_the_arcuate_fasciculus (https://www.researchgate.net/publication/340792504_Primate_auditory_prototype_in_the_evolution_of_the_arcuate_fasciculus)

Yes I can, thank you, xSilverPhinx. That was a relatively readable paper, I thought. (Once I'd zoomed my screen to be able to make out the text.) A lot of cool information in there, and I learned a couple of new terms: tonotopy (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tonotopy) and, tractogram (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tractography). :thumbsup:

I'll edit the OP now.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on May 03, 2020, 02:13:18 AM
Quote from: Dark Lightning on May 02, 2020, 11:39:52 PM
It's just amazing that they can pick that information out of a fossil. Some smart people there!

This research was done with MRI and associated techniques. I'm not sure they could have made a similar discovery using fossils. Some interesting things have been learned using endocasts (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endocast) from fossil skulls though.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 02:25:29 AM
Quote from: Recusant on May 03, 2020, 02:06:51 AM
...tractogram (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tractography)...

Damn, that brings back memories.  ;D There was a question in the masters entrance exam neuroanatomy section asking us to differentiate between nerves and tracts. Or something like that. :grin:

It would have been really easy if it hadn't been for the existence of the optic nerve protruding from the central nervous system. There is also an optic tract but I didn't know at the time where one ends and the other begins. ::) Pesky optic nerve is there just to confuse people taking an entrance exam.  :P
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 02:35:37 AM
They wouldn't be able to make that specific discovery using fossils because the arcuate fasciculus is a nerve tract inside the brain, here's a pic of the tract with the neocortex (outer layer) removed to expose it:

(https://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kaQ5P19FVgk/TVAYE2c834I/AAAAAAAAHhQ/nyl23qCGB94/s1600/Arcuate_fasciculus.JPG)

As I understand it, an endocast of a high-quality fossil would shed light on area distributions of the outer layer, but not deeper structures. In that way, it's sort of like an EEG. You don't use EEG to study deep brain structures.  ;D
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on May 03, 2020, 04:01:11 AM
Quote from: Recusant on May 03, 2020, 02:13:18 AM
Quote from: Dark Lightning on May 02, 2020, 11:39:52 PM
It's just amazing that they can pick that information out of a fossil. Some smart people there!

This research was done with MRI and associated techniques. I'm not sure they could have made a similar discovery using fossils. Some interesting things have been learned using endocasts (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endocast) from fossil skulls though.

Oops, you're right.  :-[ I read it right, just reported back poorly.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Tank on May 06, 2020, 06:45:53 AM
I just love this thread  :cheerleader: :cheerleader: :cheerleader: :cheerleader:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on May 06, 2020, 03:06:26 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 02:35:37 AM
They wouldn't be able to make that specific discovery using fossils because the arcuate fasciculus is a nerve tract inside the brain, here's a pic of the tract with the neocortex (outer layer) removed to expose it:

there's been some work in soft tissue fossiliztion. its rare, because the soft stuff is rarely preserved from the elemnts long enough to begin th eprocess. but it does happen.

Abstract
Some of the most remarkable fossils preserve cellular details of soft tissues. In many of these, the tissues have been replaced by calcium phosphate. This process has been assumed to require elevated concentrations of phosphate in sediment pore waters. In decay experiments modern shrimps became partially mineralized in amorphous calcium phosphate, preserving cellular details of muscle tissue, particularly in a system closed to oxygen. The source for the formation of calcium phosphate was the shrimp itself. Mineralization, which was accompanied by a drop in pH, commenced within 2 weeks and increased in extent for at least 4 to 8 weeks. This mechanism halts the normal loss of detail of soft-tissue morphology before fossilization. Similar closed conditions would prevail where organisms are rapidly overgrown by microbial mats.

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/259/5100/1439


in the past all the interior material was always cleared away from the bones and discarded. then 20 years ago somemone thought he identified a preserved dinosaur heart inside the ribcage. it was a mistake, but since then theve found fish heearts-- in brazil

https://theconversation.com/the-first-fossilised-heart-ever-found-in-a-prehistoric-animal-57204

(https://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2016/04/20/18/335EE9D600000578-3550247-image-a-45_1461172196296.jpg)
its not very delicate, though. anything in nerveous syustem would be a stretch.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on May 06, 2020, 11:17:53 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 02:25:29 AM
Quote from: Recusant on May 03, 2020, 02:06:51 AM
...tractogram (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tractography)...

Damn, that brings back memories.  ;D There was a question in the masters entrance exam neuroanatomy section asking us to differentiate between nerves and tracts. Or something like that. :grin:

It would have been really easy if it hadn't been for the existence of the optic nerve protruding from the central nervous system. There is also an optic tract but I didn't know at the time where one ends and the other begins. ::) Pesky optic nerve is there just to confuse people taking an entrance exam.  :P


Nonetheless you made it over that hurdle.  :cheers:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on May 07, 2020, 04:18:06 PM
Quote from: Recusant on May 06, 2020, 11:17:53 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 02:25:29 AM
Quote from: Recusant on May 03, 2020, 02:06:51 AM
...tractogram (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tractography)...

Damn, that brings back memories.  ;D There was a question in the masters entrance exam neuroanatomy section asking us to differentiate between nerves and tracts. Or something like that. :grin:

It would have been really easy if it hadn't been for the existence of the optic nerve protruding from the central nervous system. There is also an optic tract but I didn't know at the time where one ends and the other begins. ::) Pesky optic nerve is there just to confuse people taking an entrance exam.  :P


Nonetheless you made it over that hurdle.  :cheers:

:whew:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on May 07, 2020, 05:41:25 PM
Quote from: billy rubin on May 06, 2020, 03:06:26 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on May 03, 2020, 02:35:37 AM
They wouldn't be able to make that specific discovery using fossils because the arcuate fasciculus is a nerve tract inside the brain, here's a pic of the tract with the neocortex (outer layer) removed to expose it:

there's been some work in soft tissue fossiliztion. its rare, because the soft stuff is rarely preserved from the elemnts long enough to begin th eprocess. but it does happen.

Abstract
Some of the most remarkable fossils preserve cellular details of soft tissues. In many of these, the tissues have been replaced by calcium phosphate. This process has been assumed to require elevated concentrations of phosphate in sediment pore waters. In decay experiments modern shrimps became partially mineralized in amorphous calcium phosphate, preserving cellular details of muscle tissue, particularly in a system closed to oxygen. The source for the formation of calcium phosphate was the shrimp itself. Mineralization, which was accompanied by a drop in pH, commenced within 2 weeks and increased in extent for at least 4 to 8 weeks. This mechanism halts the normal loss of detail of soft-tissue morphology before fossilization. Similar closed conditions would prevail where organisms are rapidly overgrown by microbial mats.

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/259/5100/1439


in the past all the interior material was always cleared away from the bones and discarded. then 20 years ago somemone thought he identified a preserved dinosaur heart inside the ribcage. it was a mistake, but since then theve found fish heearts-- in brazil

https://theconversation.com/the-first-fossilised-heart-ever-found-in-a-prehistoric-animal-57204

(https://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2016/04/20/18/335EE9D600000578-3550247-image-a-45_1461172196296.jpg)
its not very delicate, though. anything in nerveous syustem would be a stretch.

Cool stuff, billy rubin! :grin:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on May 15, 2020, 03:13:10 AM
Hippocampus, we're looking at you.

"How does the brain link events to form a memory? Study reveals unexpected mental processes" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/05/200508112903.htm)

QuoteA woman walking down the street hears a bang. Several moments later she discovers her boyfriend, who had been walking ahead of her, has been shot. A month later, the woman checks into the emergency room. The noises made by garbage trucks, she says, are causing panic attacks. Her brain had formed a deep, lasting connection between loud sounds and the devastating sight she witnessed.

This story, relayed by clinical psychiatrist and co-author of a new study Mohsin Ahmed, MD, PhD, is a powerful example of the brain's powerful ability to remember and connect events separated in time. And now, in that new study in mice published today [May 8] in Neuron, scientists at Columbia's Zuckerman Institute have shed light on how the brain can form such enduring links.

The scientists uncovered a surprising mechanism by which the hippocampus, a brain region critical for memory, builds bridges across time: by firing off bursts of activity that seem random, but in fact make up a complex pattern that, over time, help the brain learn associations. By revealing the underlying circuitry behind associative learning, the findings lay the foundation for a better understanding of anxiety and trauma- and stressor-related disorders, such as panic and post-traumatic stress disorders, in which a seemingly neutral event can elicit a negative response.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/05/200508112903.htm)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on May 15, 2020, 07:51:24 PM
Here is a junior varsity theory about the development of language as a necessity for teaching tool making.  Maybe a bit too simplistic but an easy read.
https://getpocket.com/explore/item/a-sneaky-theory-of-where-language-came-from?utm_source=pocket-newtab
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 05, 2020, 09:07:40 PM
A new MRI study indicates that the surface area of the human cerebellum is greater than had previously been thought.



"'Little brain' or cerebellum not so little after all" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/07/200731135558.htm)

Quote
(https://www.sciencedaily.com/images/2020/07/200731135558_1_540x360.jpg)
Cerebellum highlighted in illustration of brain. Image credit: © decade3d / stock.adobe.com




When we say someone has a quick mind, it may be in part thanks to our expanded cerebellum that distinguishes human brains from those of macaque monkeys, for example.

Sometimes referred to by its Latin translation as the '"little brain"', the cerebellum is located close to the brainstem and sits under the cortex in the hindbrain. New research at San Diego State University, however, calls the "little" terminology into question.

The cerebellum plays a versatile role, contributing to our five senses as well as pain, movements, thought, and emotion.

It's essentially a flat sheet with the thickness of a crepe, crinkled into hundreds of folds to make it fit into a compact volume about one-eighth the volume of the cerebral cortex. For this reason, the surface area of the cerebellum was thought to be considerably smaller than that of the cerebral cortex.

By using an ultra-high-field 9.4 Tesla MRI machine to scan the brain and custom software to process the resulting images, an SDSU neuroimaging expert discovered the tightly packed folds actually contain a surface area equal to 80% of the cerebral cortex's surface area. In comparison, the macaque's cerebellum is about 30% the size of its cortex.

"The fact that it has such a large surface area speaks to the evolution of distinctively human behaviors and cognition," said Martin Sereno, psychology professor, cognitive neuroscientist and director of the SDSU MRI Imaging Center. "It has expanded so much that the folding patterns are very complex."

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/07/200731135558.htm)]

The paper is open access:

"The human cerebellum has almost 80% of the surface area of the neocortex" | Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (https://www.pnas.org/content/early/2020/07/27/2002896117)

QuoteAbstract:

The surface of the human cerebellar cortex is much more tightly folded than the cerebral cortex. It was computationally reconstructed for the first time to the level of all individual folia from multicontrast high-resolution postmortem MRI scans. Its total shrinkage-corrected surface area (1,590 cm2) was larger than expected or previously reported, equal to 78% of the total surface area of the human neocortex. The unfolded and flattened surface comprised a narrow strip 10 cm wide but almost 1 m long. By applying the same methods to the neocortex and cerebellum of the macaque monkey, we found that its cerebellum was relatively much smaller, approximately 33% of the total surface area of its neocortex. This suggests a prominent role for the cerebellum in the evolution of distinctively human behaviors and cognition.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 21, 2020, 06:37:57 PM
Quote from: Recusant on August 05, 2020, 09:07:40 PM
A new MRI study indicates that the surface area of the human cerebellum is greater than had previously been thought.



"'Little brain' or cerebellum not so little after all" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/07/200731135558.htm)

Quote
(https://www.sciencedaily.com/images/2020/07/200731135558_1_540x360.jpg)
Cerebellum highlighted in illustration of brain. Image credit: © decade3d / stock.adobe.com




When we say someone has a quick mind, it may be in part thanks to our expanded cerebellum that distinguishes human brains from those of macaque monkeys, for example.

Sometimes referred to by its Latin translation as the '"little brain"', the cerebellum is located close to the brainstem and sits under the cortex in the hindbrain. New research at San Diego State University, however, calls the "little" terminology into question.

The cerebellum plays a versatile role, contributing to our five senses as well as pain, movements, thought, and emotion.

It's essentially a flat sheet with the thickness of a crepe, crinkled into hundreds of folds to make it fit into a compact volume about one-eighth the volume of the cerebral cortex. For this reason, the surface area of the cerebellum was thought to be considerably smaller than that of the cerebral cortex.

By using an ultra-high-field 9.4 Tesla MRI machine to scan the brain and custom software to process the resulting images, an SDSU neuroimaging expert discovered the tightly packed folds actually contain a surface area equal to 80% of the cerebral cortex's surface area. In comparison, the macaque's cerebellum is about 30% the size of its cortex.

"The fact that it has such a large surface area speaks to the evolution of distinctively human behaviors and cognition," said Martin Sereno, psychology professor, cognitive neuroscientist and director of the SDSU MRI Imaging Center. "It has expanded so much that the folding patterns are very complex."

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/07/200731135558.htm)]

The paper is open access:

"The human cerebellum has almost 80% of the surface area of the neocortex" | Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (https://www.pnas.org/content/early/2020/07/27/2002896117)

QuoteAbstract:

The surface of the human cerebellar cortex is much more tightly folded than the cerebral cortex. It was computationally reconstructed for the first time to the level of all individual folia from multicontrast high-resolution postmortem MRI scans. Its total shrinkage-corrected surface area (1,590 cm2) was larger than expected or previously reported, equal to 78% of the total surface area of the human neocortex. The unfolded and flattened surface comprised a narrow strip 10 cm wide but almost 1 m long. By applying the same methods to the neocortex and cerebellum of the macaque monkey, we found that its cerebellum was relatively much smaller, approximately 33% of the total surface area of its neocortex. This suggests a prominent role for the cerebellum in the evolution of distinctively human behaviors and cognition.

That's so cool.  8)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 21, 2020, 06:45:56 PM
Ever see a Purkinje cell? This is a Purkinje cell (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purkinje_cell):

(https://ntls.co/images/NTLS/blog/purkinjecells.jpg)

Looks like a little tree. In fact, the word dendrites, which are those ramified projections, comes from the word déndron, which is ancient Greek for 'tree'.

(https://www.accessscience.com/media/BR/media/BR1008151FG0010.jpg)

 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Randy on August 21, 2020, 07:25:36 PM
Those pictures of the cells are pretty, Silver.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 22, 2020, 12:30:28 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on August 21, 2020, 06:45:56 PM
Ever see a Purkinje cell? This is a Purkinje cell (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purkinje_cell):

(https://ntls.co/images/NTLS/blog/purkinjecells.jpg)

Looks like a little tree. In fact, the word dendrites, which are those ramified projections, comes from the word déndron, which is ancient Greek for 'tree'.

(https://www.accessscience.com/media/BR/media/BR1008151FG0010.jpg)


Dig the images. I've always had a soft spot for the black/electric chartreuse color combination.  :smokin cool:

Maybe it's me, but I'm going to say that the "Structure" section of the Wikipedia article is sad. I'll cite its final sentence, but the whole thing suffers from the same disability:

QuotePurkinje cells send inhibitory projections to the deep cerebellar nuclei, and constitute the sole output of all motor coordination in the cerebellar cortex.

How do you parse that? I get "purkinje cells ... constitute the sole output of motor coordination in the cerebellar cortex."

Cells are the output of motor coordination? Not being an expert, I might guess as to the actual meaning: "Purkinje cells send inhibitory projections to the deep cerebellar nuclei. These inhibitory projections constitute the sole output of all motor coordination in the cerebellar cortex."

Still dense and uninformative to a lay reader, even if my edit presents an accurate version of the idea. What are "inhibitory projections" for instance? The section reads to me like the output of somebody who knows exactly what they're talking about (being generous here, because I didn't understand it) but is not able to present it effectively.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 22, 2020, 12:39:08 AM
Quote from: Recusant on August 22, 2020, 12:30:28 AM
Dig the images. I've always had a soft spot for the black/electric chartreuse color combination.  :smokin cool:

Maybe it's me, but I'm going to say that the "Structure" section of the Wikipedia article is sad. I'll cite its final sentence, but the whole thing suffers from the same disability:

QuotePurkinje cells send inhibitory projections to the deep cerebellar nuclei, and constitute the sole output of all motor coordination in the cerebellar cortex.

How do you parse that? I get "purkinje cells ... constitute the sole output of motor coordination in the cerebellar cortex."

Cells are the output of motor coordination? Not being an expert, I might guess as to the actual meaning: "Purkinje cells send inhibitory projections to the deep cerebellar nuclei. These inhibitory projections constitute the sole output of all motor coordination in the cerebellar cortex."

Still dense and uninformative to a lay reader, even if my edit presents an accurate version of the idea. What are "inhibitory projections" for instance? The section reads to me like the output of somebody who knows exactly what they're talking about (being generous here, because I didn't understand it) but is not able to present it effectively.

Hmm...good question. :notsure: To be honest I found it a bit dense as well. As for 'inhibitory projections', those would be due to the fact that Purkinje cells inhibit the firing of other neurons. They are GABAergic neurons (secrete GABA), with GABA being the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in the SNC. Thus, they are important in fine motor tuning.

But yeah, that wiki article could do with some clearer writing.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 22, 2020, 12:54:58 AM
[spoiler=example *ignore*]OK, so would "inhibitory secretions" convey the correct idea here, or are the GABA neurotransmitters actually "projected"?[/spoiler] Sorry, xSilverPhinx, I won't impose upon your good nature by carrying on down this rabbit hole.  :snicker1:

Wikipedia is just reminding me that if I want to learn more about this I need to find better sources.

That's just one sentence, but as I said before I think pretty much everything in that section fails along the same lines.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 22, 2020, 01:07:10 AM
Quote from: Recusant on August 22, 2020, 12:54:58 AM
[spoiler=example *ignore*]OK, so would "inhibitory secretions" convey the correct idea here, or are the GABA neurotransmitters actually "projected"?[/spoiler] Sorry, xSilverPhinx, I won't impose upon your good nature by carrying on down this rabbit hole.  :snicker1:

Wikipedia is just reminding me that if I want to learn more about this I need to find better sources.

That's just one sentence, but as I said before I think pretty much everything in that section fails along the same lines.

Heheh! When you say 'projected', do you mean like shot out of the neuron or something? :snicker: I think 'secreted' is a better word in this sense. :P When they're talking about GABAergic projections, it's way more likely they mean the GABAergic neuron's projections. 

Rabbit hole? Where? :popcorn:

:grin:

ETA: If you haven't heard of it already, you might want to try Scholarpedia. They have more comprehensive articles.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 29, 2020, 09:24:34 PM
Thank you for the clarification! Wikipedia can be cool, but some of the more obscure articles are ridiculous. In my electronic travels I came across the article about Serikornis (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serikornis), a fossil species that definitely appears to be in the evolution from dinosaur to bird. In the article's "Description" section, the following sentence could be found:

QuoteSymmetrical, balloon-free remorces are attached along the forearms and elongated feathers of the hind limbs extend to the toes, suggesting that the remiges of the hind legs had evolved in the maniraptorans residing on the ground before being co-opted into an avian flying lifestyle or a gliding arboreal veil.

"Balloon-free"??? What the hell are "remorces"? "A gliding arboreal veil" sounds picturesque, but really I think I'd have to have some chemical assistance to make sense of it. That might be a pleasing experience and there's a chance I'd gain some knowledge along the way, but not about Serikornis.  ;)

I found the source and re-wrote the sentence.

Now that I re-read the section I see that further work is needed. As far as I've been able to determine, there is no such thing as a "camelles system." There is a French word "camelle," but that refers to a pile of salt, presumably part of the process of harvesting salt from a salt marsh. By the time anybody reads this, the "camelles system" will have gone the way of the gliding arboreal veil, though it will always be there in the history of the article.

My hypothesis is that the original author of the section used voice recognition software to write it, and didn't bother to edit the result.

I'm still working on the textbooks I downloaded from your link months ago, but will try to remember Scholarpedia in future, thank you.  :cheers:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 29, 2020, 10:33:57 PM
Elon Musk is worried about AI, so he's got his people working on cyborgs. Not that the term is used in the article, of course. Apparently he's looking for new talent to contribute to the project.

"Neuralink: Elon Musk unveils pig with chip in its brain" | BBC (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-53956683)

QuoteElon Musk has unveiled a pig called Gertrude with a coin-sized computer chip in her brain to demonstrate his ambitious plans to create a working brain-to-machine interface.

"It's kind of like a Fitbit in your skull with tiny wires," the billionaire entrepreneur said on a webcast.

His start-up Neuralink applied to launch human trials last year.

The interface could allow people with neurological conditions to control phones or computers with their mind.

Mr Musk argues such chips could eventually be used to help cure conditions such as dementia, Parkinson's disease and spinal cord injuries.

But the long-term ambition is to usher in an age of what Mr Musk calls "superhuman cognition", in part to combat artificial intelligence so powerful he says it could destroy the human race.

[Continues . . . (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-53956683)]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: No one on August 30, 2020, 12:29:01 AM
Ear worms, where do they come from?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 15, 2020, 08:37:49 PM
Quote from: No one on August 30, 2020, 12:29:01 AM
Ear worms, where do they come from?

Sorry, didn't see this.  :P

Good question. I don't know, but it's possible earworms are, among other things, triggered memories. When you come across a word, image,  sound or other sensory stimulus that is somehow associated with a tune in your memories, that particular ensemble of neurons that support the musical memory will activate and you will experience the memory of the tune.   

For instance, let's say you're listening to Tony Igy's Astronomia while opening a can of peas. It's possible you associate the smell of canned peas with the song, and the next time you experience that particular smell there's a good chance you evoke the memory of freakin' Astronomia.  ::)

If the song has lyrics, then it could be a word or a subjective feeling of a concept (depending on how you think) that evokes the tune.

There seems to be a degree of obsessive tendencies in the frequency in which someone has earworms. I don't think you need to have full-blown OCD to have that problem, just a mild condition will do.  ;D 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 15, 2020, 08:43:13 PM
This is interesting:

Acetaminophen Alters Perception of Risk (https://neurosciencenews.com/acetaminophen-risk-taking-16984/)

Quote"Acetaminophen seems to make people feel less negative emotion when they consider risky activities — they just don't feel as scared," said Baldwin Way, co-author of the study and associate professor of psychology at The Ohio State University.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Randy on September 16, 2020, 12:38:15 AM
That is interesting, Silver. I keep quite a bit of acetaminophen in my drawer. From time to time I get headaches and I don't know the cause. It's been a couple of weeks since I've taken some.

But I wouldn't be thinking of doing something dangerous anyway.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 16, 2020, 01:35:55 AM
Quote from: Recusant on August 29, 2020, 10:33:57 PM
Elon Musk is worried about AI, so he's got his people working on cyborgs. Not that the term is used in the article, of course. Apparently he's looking for new talent to contribute to the project.

"Neuralink: Elon Musk unveils pig with chip in its brain" | BBC (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-53956683)

QuoteElon Musk has unveiled a pig called Gertrude with a coin-sized computer chip in her brain to demonstrate his ambitious plans to create a working brain-to-machine interface.

"It's kind of like a Fitbit in your skull with tiny wires," the billionaire entrepreneur said on a webcast.

His start-up Neuralink applied to launch human trials last year.

The interface could allow people with neurological conditions to control phones or computers with their mind.

Mr Musk argues such chips could eventually be used to help cure conditions such as dementia, Parkinson's disease and spinal cord injuries.

But the long-term ambition is to usher in an age of what Mr Musk calls "superhuman cognition", in part to combat artificial intelligence so powerful he says it could destroy the human race.

[Continues . . . (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-53956683)]

This...this is causing a load of controversy in some circles. Love it.  ;D
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 16, 2020, 01:37:32 AM
Quote from: Randy on September 16, 2020, 12:38:15 AM
That is interesting, Silver. I keep quite a bit of acetaminophen in my drawer. From time to time I get headaches and I don't know the cause. It's been a couple of weeks since I've taken some.

But I wouldn't be thinking of doing something dangerous anyway.

Me too. The most dangerous thing I've been doing lately is cross the road every now and then. ::)

:P 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Randy on September 18, 2020, 11:56:58 PM
I found this interesting and Silver might too although she may have read up on it already.

A computer interface allows quadriplegic man ability to feel. (https://massivesci.com/articles/bmi-brain-machine-interface-burkhart-paralyzed-touch-motion/?__s=fxu76rzyp0mr4kujlbf9&utm_source=drip&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=The+medicated+brain+%28Weekend+Reads+09-18%29&utm_content=The+medicated+brain+%F0%9F%A7%A0)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on September 19, 2020, 08:38:43 PM
Quote from: Randy on September 18, 2020, 11:56:58 PM
I found this interesting and Silver might too although she may have read up on it already.

A computer interface allows quadriplegic man ability to feel. (https://massivesci.com/articles/bmi-brain-machine-interface-burkhart-paralyzed-touch-motion/?__s=fxu76rzyp0mr4kujlbf9&utm_source=drip&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=The+medicated+brain+%28Weekend+Reads+09-18%29&utm_content=The+medicated+brain+%F0%9F%A7%A0)

Yes, I saw a news piece on that a couple of months ago, but that doesn't make it any less interesting!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on September 20, 2020, 05:22:15 PM
:seahorse:  More on the hippocampus.  :sidesmile:

"Scientists discover what happens in our brains when guessing" | UK Research and Innovation (https://www.ukri.org/news/scientists-discover-what-happens-in-our-brains/)

QuoteResearchers have identified how cells in our brains work together to join up memories of separate experiences, allowing us to make educated guesses in everyday life.

By studying both human and mouse brain activity, they report that this process happens in a region of the brain called the hippocampus.

The study, published in the scientific journal 'Cell', also reveals that brain cells can link different memories while we are resting or sleeping, a process that may be important in creativity.

The research was funded by the Medical Research Council (MRC), part of UKRI, and Wellcome, and was carried out at the MRC Brain Network Dynamics Unit at the University of Oxford, by Dr Helen Barron and Dr David Dupret.

Dr Barron said: "In everyday life we often infer connections or relationships between different things we see or hear. So even when we don't know the full story, we can make an educated guess by joining-the-dots. For example, I'm looking for my friend Sam. Someone tells me that Ben is in the library. I know that Sam and Ben go everywhere together, so I guess that Sam is in the library too.

"Although this process is crucial to everyday life, until now, we didn't know how the cells in our brains are able to form links between separate experiences."

The researchers began by pinpointing this ability to an area of the brain called the hippocampus that is already known to play a role in learning and memory. They did this using MRI scans on people and by temporarily switching off the hippocampus in mice.

To discover precisely how brain cells enable us to make educated guesses, the researchers ran a set of very similar experiments in people and mice.

[Continues . . . (https://www.ukri.org/news/scientists-discover-what-happens-in-our-brains/)]

The paper is open access:

"Neuronal Computation Underlying Inferential Reasoning in Humans and Mice" | Cell (https://www.cell.com/cell/fulltext/S0092-8674(20)31077-1)

QuoteSummary:

Every day we make decisions critical for adaptation and survival. We repeat actions with known consequences. But we also draw on loosely related events to infer and imagine the outcome of entirely novel choices. These inferential decisions are thought to engage a number of brain regions; however, the underlying neuronal computation remains unknown. Here, we use a multi-day cross-species approach in humans and mice to report the functional anatomy and neuronal computation underlying inferential decisions. We show that during successful inference, the mammalian brain uses a hippocampal prospective code to forecast temporally structured learned associations. Moreover, during resting behavior, coactivation of hippocampal cells in sharp-wave/ripples represent inferred relationships that include reward, thereby "joining-the-dots" between events that have not been observed together but lead to profitable outcomes. Computing mnemonic links in this manner may provide an important mechanism to build a cognitive map that stretches beyond direct experience, thus supporting flexible behavior.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on October 01, 2020, 08:08:08 PM
Posted in the miniature robotics thread (https://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=16693.msg406047#msg406047), but noting it here as well.

"A magnetically actuated microrobot for targeted neural cell delivery and selective connection of neural networks" | ScienceAdvances (https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/39/eabb5696)

QuoteAbstract:

There has been a great deal of interest in the development of technologies for actively manipulating neural networks in vitro, providing natural but simplified environments in a highly reproducible manner in which to study brain function and related diseases. Platforms for these in vitro neural networks require precise and selective neural connections at the target location, with minimal external influences, and measurement of neural activity to determine how neurons communicate. Here, we report a neuron-loaded microrobot for selective connection of neural networks via precise delivery to a gap between two neural clusters by an external magnetic field. In addition, the extracellular action potential was propagated from one cluster to the other through the neurons on the microrobot. The proposed technique shows the potential for use in experiments to understand how neurons communicate in the neural network by actively connecting neural clusters.

[Link to full paper. (https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/39/eabb5696)]

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on October 07, 2020, 05:46:54 PM
Quote from: Recusant on October 01, 2020, 08:08:08 PM
Posted in the miniature robotics thread (https://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=16693.msg406047#msg406047), but noting it here as well.

"A magnetically actuated microrobot for targeted neural cell delivery and selective connection of neural networks" | ScienceAdvances (https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/39/eabb5696)

QuoteAbstract:

There has been a great deal of interest in the development of technologies for actively manipulating neural networks in vitro, providing natural but simplified environments in a highly reproducible manner in which to study brain function and related diseases. Platforms for these in vitro neural networks require precise and selective neural connections at the target location, with minimal external influences, and measurement of neural activity to determine how neurons communicate. Here, we report a neuron-loaded microrobot for selective connection of neural networks via precise delivery to a gap between two neural clusters by an external magnetic field. In addition, the extracellular action potential was propagated from one cluster to the other through the neurons on the microrobot. The proposed technique shows the potential for use in experiments to understand how neurons communicate in the neural network by actively connecting neural clusters.

[Link to full paper. (https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/39/eabb5696)]

I'm tellin' ya, pretty soon we're gonna have all sorts of little robots crawling under our skins.  :o
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on October 07, 2020, 05:48:42 PM
Extraordinary discovery of neurons in the vitrified brain of a victim of the 79 AD Vesuvian eruption (https://artdaily.cc/news/128863/Extraordinary-discovery-of-neurons-in-the-vitrified-brain-of-a-victim-of-the-79-AD-Vesuvian-eruption#.X33whHV7mUl)

(https://artdaily.cc/imagenes/2020/10/05/vesuvius-2.jpg)

:o :o :o
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on October 07, 2020, 11:30:20 PM
I'd come across this story and was unable to interpret the scanning electron microscope (SEM) image. The paper (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0240017) has the image with color added to highlight the structures, which helps.

(https://i.imgur.com/nvxlu3g.png)

"SEM image of spinal cord axons (green) intercepting cell bodies [1, 2] and sheath-shaped structures (yellow and orange) (scale bars in micron)."
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Tank on October 08, 2020, 08:41:47 AM
Wow, that is truly incredible.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on November 09, 2020, 03:17:34 AM
A part of the brain appears to be set up in such a way as to be the go-to when it comes to utilizing written language. Not as surprising or significant as I imagine some supernaturalists would think. Recognizing visual patterns and connecting them to language is a natural process.

"Humans are born with brains 'prewired' to see words" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/10/201022125525.htm)

QuoteHumans are born with a part of the brain that is prewired to be receptive to seeing words and letters, setting the stage at birth for people to learn how to read, a new study suggests.

Analyzing brain scans of newborns, researchers found that this part of the brain -- called the "visual word form area" (VWFA) -- is connected to the language network of the brain.

"That makes it fertile ground to develop a sensitivity to visual words -- even before any exposure to language," said Zeynep Saygin, senior author of the study and assistant professor of psychology at The Ohio State University.

The VWFA is specialized for reading only in literate individuals. Some researchers had hypothesized that the pre-reading VWFA starts out being no different than other parts of the visual cortex that are sensitive to seeing faces, scenes or other objects, and only becomes selective to words and letters as children learn to read or at least as they learn language.

"We found that isn't true. Even at birth, the VWFA is more connected functionally to the language network of the brain than it is to other areas," Saygin said. "It is an incredibly exciting finding."

Saygin, who is a core faculty member of Ohio State's Chronic Brain Injury Program, conducted the study with graduate students Jin Li and Heather Hansen and assistant professor David Osher, all in psychology at Ohio State. Their results were published today in the journal Scientific Reports.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/10/201022125525.htm)]

The paper is open access:

"Innate connectivity patterns drive the development of the visual word form area" | Scientific Reports (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-75015-7)

QuoteAbstract:

What determines the functional organization of cortex? One hypothesis is that innate connectivity patterns, either structural or functional connectivity, set up a scaffold upon which functional specialization can later take place. We tested this hypothesis by asking whether the visual word form area (VWFA), an experience-driven region, was already functionally connected to proto language networks in neonates scanned within one week of birth. Using the data from the Human Connectone Project (HCP) and the Developing Human Connectome Project (dHCP), we calculated intrinsic functional connectivity during resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and found that neonates showed similar functional connectivity patterns to adults. We observed that (1) language regions connected more strongly with the putative VWFA than other adjacent ventral visual regions that also show foveal bias, and (2) the VWFA connected more strongly with frontotemporal language regions than with regions adjacent to these language regions. These data suggest that the location of the VWFA is earmarked at birth due to its connectivity with the language network, providing evidence that innate connectivity instructs the later refinement of cortex.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on November 09, 2020, 03:25:29 AM
I saw that the other day. It reminds me of people who have been cured of blindness saying that the written word looked "pretty much like they expected".
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on December 01, 2020, 11:54:57 AM
I posted this video in the Youtube Videos That Don't Suck thread, and thought I'd add it to this as well.  ;D



This dog, known as Chaser (who unfortunately died a year after her owner did) is a brilliant animal. Besides learning to identify about a 1000 toys by name she was able to identify a new toy through the process of logical elimination, which was previously thought to be a mental aptitude unique to humans.

It goes like this: Chaser is given the command to find 'Meow' even though she never saw the toy previously. She does, however, know that the new toy in her batch must be 'Meow' because she knows the names of the other toys and knows they are not 'Meow'. In other words, she makes the connection that the unknown toy is 'Meow' because the others are not.

Here's another clip in which she has to find 'Darwin' using the same process of logical elimination:

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Randy on December 01, 2020, 02:37:51 PM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on December 01, 2020, 11:54:57 AM
I posted this video in the Youtube Videos That Don't Suck thread, and thought I'd add it to this as well.  ;D



This dog, known as Chaser (who unfortunately died a year after her owner did) is a brilliant animal. Besides learning to identify about a 1000 toys by name she was able to identify a new toy through the process of logical elimination, which was previously thought to be a mental aptitude unique to humans.

It goes like this: Chaser is given the command to find 'Meow' even though she never saw the toy previously. She does, however, know that the new toy in her batch must be 'Meow' because she knows the names of the other toys and knows they are not 'Meow'. In other words, she makes the connection that the unknown toy is 'Meow' because the others are not.

Here's another clip in which she has to find 'Darwin' using the same process of logical elimination:


That's neat. Would she be considered a genius among canines or is this something any dog can do?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on December 01, 2020, 08:28:13 PM
Quote from: Randy on December 01, 2020, 02:37:51 PM
That's neat. Would she be considered a genius among canines or is this something any dog can do?

I don't know.  ;D She had an owner who was very devoted to training her so there's definitely nature and nurture playing hand in hand to develop her skills. IMO she's a genius among dogs, but then again I'm no expert on canine cognition so I can't say.

In the full PBS Nova Documentary they mention a gene called CTNND2, which is important for normal brain development, and that the Border Collie genome shows selective breeding for this gene, which would explain why they are the smartest dog breed. But I haven't been able to find a reference to back that claim up...
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Randy on December 02, 2020, 12:10:20 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on December 01, 2020, 08:28:13 PM
Quote from: Randy on December 01, 2020, 02:37:51 PM
That's neat. Would she be considered a genius among canines or is this something any dog can do?

I don't know.  ;D She had an owner who was very devoted to training her so there's definitely nature and nurture playing hand in hand to develop her skills. IMO she's a genius among dogs, but then again I'm no expert on canine cognition so I can't say.

In the full PBS Nova Documentary they mention a gene called CTNND2, which is important for normal brain development, and that the Border Collie genome shows selective breeding for this gene, which would explain why they are the smartest dog breed. But I haven't been able to find a reference to back that claim up...
It would be an interesting find to know that it's common among them.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on December 02, 2020, 01:46:05 AM
I read an account of this dog a while back in Scientific American or some other magazine.  Incredible recognition abilities in the the dog.   I am not sure that Border Collies are the most intelligent dogs but I am confident that they are generally in the top echelon of canine thinkers and doers. Borders are an outstanding breed who work so well with humans.

I  hesitate to assign top dog status to any particular canine because of my experience with a breed that is generally considered to be clowns, not intellectuals.  I had a constant companion named Molly. She was an Irish setter.  A comedian by most assessments of that breed from people that did not know her.  Molly was brilliant. She could sense my mood and react to the slightest nuance of expression on my face. She probably saved my life when my wife died suddenly, unexpectedly.  Molly sensed my mood in every minute of that saddest part of my life.  She seemed to know when to embrace me with her love and affection and to also sense when to encourage me to become stoic. She was a big girl who was protective of me most persuasively to anyone who dared threaten me or that she might have perceived as threatening.

Then there was Teddy. He was a rescue from the local pound. He was an almost, but not quite thoroughbred, Bernese Mountain Dog.  We bonded quickly, He was my best friend and constant companion. Where I went, Teddy went, When I was lost, Teddy would find me, When I am joyful, dog joins me.
What I need, Dog becomes.

Sailor was an Australian Shepard. No one ever has loved and protected and cared for me more than he did.  The feeling went both ways without question and Sailor almost surely knew that to be true.

I do hope that God will forgive me for assigning more status and dedication to my beloved dogs than I have assigned to more than a  precious few of the people in my life. 



Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on December 02, 2020, 06:39:38 AM
I agree with you, Icarus. It ties in with the discussion of human intelligence and how that is supposedly measured. Some dogs do seem to have more of what we would recognize as reasoning ability than others though.

I also agree with xSilverPhinx, that the phenomenal abilities displayed by Chaser came to light through being cultivated by her human partner. In my extended family was a Shetland Sheepdog who knew the names of about 20 toys. If his people had worked on it, I don't doubt that he'd have been able to learn many more. The logical elimination though, I'm not sure he would have got.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on December 02, 2020, 06:50:56 AM
We'll just put this nifty little swimming cap on and take a look, shall we? Short video about a new infrared light system for monitoring waking brains (specifically of very young children). One imagines that they've already determined that using infrared light on people's heads and brains is harmless.

Hat-tip to Lark for this one.  :toff:

"Brain imaging technology designed for babies" | BBC (https://www.bbc.com/news/av/technology-55062221)

QuoteScientists in the UK have demonstrated technology that could allow us to better understand a baby's brain during moments of natural activity.

The brain imaging technology has been developed by Gowerlabs, with UCL, Cambridge University, and the Rosie Hospital also working on the project.

It uses high-density diffuse optical tomography (HD-DOT) and has been tested on six-month old infants.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on February 07, 2021, 01:16:45 AM
(https://scontent.fpoa1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-0/p526x296/143879571_4956939737681047_3496694564257324990_o.jpg?_nc_cat=100&ccb=2&_nc_sid=730e14&_nc_eui2=AeE9pf9LDxNanDLz8AtY9kdi9sr5sORSN5D2yvmw5FI3kI_f2X4qhlSBATph8gFsQTY2INznmQK1n0d3D7vVkWj0&_nc_ohc=LLS7bS-Y5hgAX8waeDp&_nc_ht=scontent.fpoa1-1.fna&tp=6&oh=7cc3d125fac9602d9b1b9f5c83e8d31d&oe=60445065)

:tellmemore:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Tank on February 07, 2021, 09:04:48 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on February 07, 2021, 01:16:45 AM
(https://scontent.fpoa1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-0/p526x296/143879571_4956939737681047_3496694564257324990_o.jpg?_nc_cat=100&ccb=2&_nc_sid=730e14&_nc_eui2=AeE9pf9LDxNanDLz8AtY9kdi9sr5sORSN5D2yvmw5FI3kI_f2X4qhlSBATph8gFsQTY2INznmQK1n0d3D7vVkWj0&_nc_ohc=LLS7bS-Y5hgAX8waeDp&_nc_ht=scontent.fpoa1-1.fna&tp=6&oh=7cc3d125fac9602d9b1b9f5c83e8d31d&oe=60445065)

:tellmemore:

And just look at the way most people use them!
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: No one on February 07, 2021, 02:46:00 PM
Thinking, it's not for everyone.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on February 08, 2021, 04:07:20 AM
My house is on a cul de sac. there are five houses.  Doctor Andersons wife is a lovely South African woman, one of the houses is occupied by a couple from West Virginia, which is almost a foreign state. Another house is occupied by a former world class tennis pro, from Croatia whose wife, Carolena, is a very charming Brazillian woman.  She is a Certified Public accountant who works for Citi Bank.  When she first worked here, her first job assignment was in Northern Montana.

Carolena was raised and attended schools and colleges in Sao Paulo. one of the largest cities and one the most beautiful cities in the world. The Montana people knowing that she was from Brazil, asked her many dumb  questions. Among them were; are  wild monkeys in your streets...did you have to guard against cheetas, leopords, or giant snakes, etc..... Carolena lived in Sao Paulo in a high rise building on the 13th floor. She had to use the elevator to get to her apartment for christs sake. Damned few Cheetas on the 13th floor.  (The silly cats and snakes do not know how to punch the elevator floor buttons)

The point is that a preponderant number  of  Americans  believe ourselves to live in the only fully developed, most civilized nation in the world. It is like so many of us sincerely believe that our shit does not stink.

I am ashamed of us. A huge proportion of us actually believe that we are the chosen ones  to the exclusion of every other culture. ......So is there something terribly wrong with our brains....or are we just stupid?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on February 08, 2021, 12:33:35 PM
not just furriners

my girlfriend from oklahoma once visited back east. the people asked her if there wwas still danger from indian attacks there and various other odd questions that neglected the last 100 years of american history.

it was as if i visited new york city and asked to meet with peter styvezant
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on February 09, 2021, 12:14:10 PM
Quote from: Icarus on February 08, 2021, 04:07:20 AM
My house is on a cul de sac. there are five houses.  Doctor Andersons wife is a lovely South African woman, one of the houses is occupied by a couple from West Virginia, which is almost a foreign state. Another house is occupied by a former world class tennis pro, from Croatia whose wife, Carolena, is a very charming Brazillian woman.  She is a Certified Public accountant who works for Citi Bank.  When she first worked here, her first job assignment was in Northern Montana.

Carolena was raised and attended schools and colleges in Sao Paulo. one of the largest cities and one the most beautiful cities in the world. The Montana people knowing that she was from Brazil, asked her many dumb  questions. Among them were; are  wild monkeys in your streets...did you have to guard against cheetas, leopords, or giant snakes, etc..... Carolena lived in Sao Paulo in a high rise building on the 13th floor. She had to use the elevator to get to her apartment for christs sake. Damned few Cheetas on the 13th floor.  (The silly cats and snakes do not know how to punch the elevator floor buttons)

The point is that a preponderant number  of  Americans  believe ourselves to live in the only fully developed, most civilized nation in the world. It is like so many of us sincerely believe that our shit does not stink.

I am ashamed of us. A huge proportion of us actually believe that we are the chosen ones  to the exclusion of every other culture. ......So is there something terribly wrong with our brains....or are we just stupid?

Heh, I get asked those kind of questions a lot, and would generally reply in the affirmative, "yes, I had to run from a jaguar on my way to school yesterday" or "yes I do live in a jungle treehouse, it's a bit hard getting a good wifi signal up here so that I can communicate with people from different countries". When they realise I'm pulling their leg they stop out of embarrassment. There are, of course, those who never realise I'm joking and in those cases I just play along. :sidesmile:

I did get called a monkey once, for being tree-dwelling Brazilian, and I replied with the correction, "an ape just like you, not monkey". Those people it's best just to ignore, but for the genuinely curious and ignorant I will explain that Brazil is more similar in many ways to other western countries than different. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on February 10, 2021, 03:47:32 AM
I wonder whether Mags and Hermes has had to put up with similar dimwits. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on February 10, 2021, 04:53:23 AM
I can't answer for them, but I can tell you that this kind of thing goes on everywhere. Back in the early '90s I was out with some friends at a local watering hole, and another patron quoted a DJ from northern California (we were in Manhattan Beach, which is no indicator of "more cool", of course). When I asked him what he was talking about, I got this, "Engineers are SO shallow!" comment :rolleyes:

There isn't a thing that a person could "be" that another person could denigrate. It's sad in a lot of ways, but it is the state of the world.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on February 11, 2021, 06:03:24 AM
I am an engineer and I do have some shallow traits. I also have some depths of intellect in a few areas.  The person who makes a blanket statement that shallowness is a characteristic of engineers, Accountants, Lawyers, democrats, sculptors, or whomever, ....pick one......is himself a narrow minded (shallow) individual.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Magdalena on February 11, 2021, 06:11:48 AM
Quote from: Icarus on February 10, 2021, 03:47:32 AM
I wonder whether Mags and Hermes has had to put up with similar dimwits.
Oh, yes.
  :picard facepalm:

I was telling a young lady that I used to work with that when I was a kid in El Salvador, my friends and I used to play around quicksand. She asked me,
"So...how do you know where your loved ones are buried, then?"  :headscratch:
I said,
"We have cemeteries."
::)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: No one on February 11, 2021, 06:48:17 AM
Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm papusas. (https://web.stardock.net/images/smiles/themes/digicons/Drool.png)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on February 11, 2021, 11:44:23 AM
Quote from: Magdalena on February 11, 2021, 06:11:48 AM
Quote from: Icarus on February 10, 2021, 03:47:32 AM
I wonder whether Mags and Hermes has had to put up with similar dimwits.
Oh, yes.
  :picard facepalm:

I was telling a young lady that I used to work with that when I was a kid in El Salvador, my friends and I used to play around quicksand. She asked me,
"So...how do you know where your loved ones are buried, then?"  :headscratch:
I said,
"We have cemeteries."
::)

:picard facepalm: :lol:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Magdalena on February 11, 2021, 04:22:24 PM
Quote from: No one on February 11, 2021, 06:48:17 AM
Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm papusas. (https://web.stardock.net/images/smiles/themes/digicons/Drool.png)

(https://thumbs.gfycat.com/TalkativeConventionalEmperorshrimp-small.gif)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on February 11, 2021, 09:44:04 PM
Here is an interesting article that explains some of the brain stuff that xSP has not told us about. Seems that there are some involuntary noises going on inside our skulls.

https://www.quantamagazine.org/brains-background-noise-may-hold-clues-to-persistent-mysteries-20210208/?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on June 05, 2021, 09:46:32 AM
From memory (with an assist from the web) a post lost in the most recent downtime and re-boot of the site:

This thread has been snoozing for a while (despite a recent near miss (https://www.happyatheistforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=15802.msg412728#msg412728)). This seems an appropriate story to rouse it with.

"Escape from Oblivion: How the Brain Reboots after Deep Anesthesia" | University of Michigan Health Lab (https://labblog.uofmhealth.org/lab-report/escape-from-oblivion-how-brain-reboots-after-deep-anesthesia)

QuoteMillions of surgical procedures performed each year would not be possible without the aid of general anesthesia, the miraculous medical ability to turn off consciousness in a reversible and controllable way.

Researchers are using this powerful tool to better understand how the brain reconstitutes consciousness and cognition after disruptions caused by sleep, medical procedures requiring anesthesia, and neurological dysfunctions such as coma.

In a new study published in the journal eLife, a team led by anesthesiologists George Mashour, M.D., Ph.D. of University of Michigan Medical School, Michigan Medicine, Max Kelz, M.D., Ph.D. of the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, and Michael Avidan, MBBCh of the Washington University School of Medicine used the anesthetics propofol and isoflurane in humans to study the patterns of reemerging consciousness and cognitive function after anesthesia.

In the study, 30 healthy adults were anesthetized for three hours. Their brain activity was measured with EEG and their sleep-wake activity was measured before and after the experiment. Each participant was given cognitive tests—designed to measure reaction speed, memory, and other functions—before receiving anesthesia, right after the return of consciousness, and then every 30 minutes thereafter.

The study team sought to answer several fundamental questions: Just how does the brain wake up after profound unconsciousness—all at once or do some areas and functions come back online first? If so, which?

"How the brain recovers from states of unconsciousness is important clinically but also gives us insight into the neural basis of consciousness itself," says Mashour.

After the anesthetic was discontinued and participants regained consciousness, cognitive testing began. A second control group of study participants, who did not receive general anesthesia and stayed awake, also completed tests over the same time period.

[Continues . . . (https://labblog.uofmhealth.org/lab-report/escape-from-oblivion-how-brain-reboots-after-deep-anesthesia)]

The paper is open access:

"Recovery of consciousness and cognition after general anesthesia in humans" | eLife (https://elifesciences.org/articles/59525)

QuoteAbstract:

Understanding how the brain recovers from unconsciousness can inform neurobiological theories of consciousness and guide clinical investigation. To address this question, we conducted a multicenter study of 60 healthy humans, half of whom received general anesthesia for 3 hr and half of whom served as awake controls. We administered a battery of neurocognitive tests and recorded electroencephalography to assess cortical dynamics.

We hypothesized that recovery of consciousness and cognition is an extended process, with differential recovery of cognitive functions that would commence with return of responsiveness and end with return of executive function, mediated by prefrontal cortex. We found that, just prior to the recovery of consciousness, frontal-parietal dynamics returned to baseline.

Consistent with our hypothesis, cognitive reconstitution after anesthesia evolved over time. Contrary to our hypothesis, executive function returned first. Early engagement of prefrontal cortex in recovery of consciousness and cognition is consistent with global neuronal workspace theory.

[¶ added - R]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on June 28, 2021, 06:21:15 AM
Another connection in the network. You've gotta love it.

"A Never-Before-Seen Type of Signal Has Been Detected in The Human Brain" | Science Alert (https://www.sciencealert.com/a-never-before-seen-type-of-signal-has-been-detected-in-the-human-brain)

QuoteScientists have discovered a unique form of cell messaging occurring in the human brain that's not been seen before. Excitingly, the discovery hints that our brains might be even more powerful units of computation than we realized.

Early last year, researchers from institutes in Germany and Greece reported a mechanism in the brain's outer cortical cells that produces a novel 'graded' signal all on its own, one that could provide individual neurons with another way to carry out their logical functions.

By measuring the electrical activity in sections of tissue removed during surgery on epileptic patients and analysing their structure using fluorescent microscopy, the neurologists found individual cells in the cortex used not just the usual sodium ions to 'fire', but calcium as well.

This combination of positively charged ions kicked off waves of voltage that had never been seen before, referred to as a calcium-mediated dendritic action potentials, or dCaAPs.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/a-never-before-seen-type-of-signal-has-been-detected-in-the-human-brain)]

The paper is open access:

"Dendritic action potentials and computation in human layer 2/3 cortical neurons" | Science (https://science.sciencemag.org/content/367/6473/83)

QuoteAbstract:

The active electrical properties of dendrites shape neuronal input and output and are fundamental to brain function. However, our knowledge of active dendrites has been almost entirely acquired from studies of rodents.

In this work, we investigated the dendrites of layer 2 and 3 (L2/3) pyramidal neurons of the human cerebral cortex ex vivo. In these neurons, we discovered a class of calcium-mediated dendritic action potentials (dCaAPs) whose waveform and effects on neuronal output have not been previously described.

In contrast to typical all-or-none action potentials, dCaAPs were graded; their amplitudes were maximal for threshold-level stimuli but dampened for stronger stimuli. These dCaAPs enabled the dendrites of individual human neocortical pyramidal neurons to classify linearly nonseparable inputs—a computation conventionally thought to require multilayered networks.

[ ¶ added. -R]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on June 29, 2021, 12:26:07 AM
WOW!   There is much for we mortals to learn.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on July 03, 2021, 06:45:44 AM
I agree, Icarus. It's a genuine pleasure to see what we learn, at least in the field of science, and for the most part.

* * *

We had something just upthread about the brain as it becomes "conscious," and here's something about the brain as it becomes less conscious.

"Going 'Blank' Looks a Lot Like Parts of The Brain Falling Asleep, Neuroscientists Find" | Science Alert (https://www.sciencealert.com/going-blank-and-daydreaming-has-a-similar-brain-pattern-to-part-of-your-brain-starting-to-fall-asleep)

QuoteIt's easy to get distracted - whether you're daydreaming about a special someone while you should be working, or completely going blank and just taking a brain break.

Now, scientists have gained a better idea of what actually happens in our brains when we 'zone out', and it looks a lot like a part of the brain is... sort-of falling asleep.

"Attentional lapses occur commonly and are associated with mind wandering, where focus is turned to thoughts unrelated to ongoing tasks and environmental demands, or mind blanking, where the stream of consciousness itself comes to a halt," the team – led by neuroscientist Thomas Andrillon – wrote in their new paper.

"Our results suggest attentional lapses share a common physiological origin: the emergence of local sleeplike activity within the awake brain."

When you go to sleep, your brain experiences 'slow waves' of brain activity in the delta (1–4 Hz) or theta (4–7 Hz) ranges during non-rapid eye movement sleep. This is the slow descent before you get to the deep, dream-filled rapid eye movement (REM) sleep.

In contrast, there's this 'sleeplike activity' while you're awake – called local sleep by scientists. It's relatively well studied by researchers and it happens while you're completely awake, but localized brain activity enters a state which resembles sleep.

There are pretty specific times when we know that local sleep happens, particularly when we're really, really tired. But the researchers discovered something that looks very similar to local sleep in well-rested volunteers when their minds were wandering or blanking.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/going-blank-and-daydreaming-has-a-similar-brain-pattern-to-part-of-your-brain-starting-to-fall-asleep)]

The paper is open access:

"Predicting lapses of attention with sleep-like slow waves" | Nature Communications (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-23890-7)

I'd quote the abstract, but the quoted portion of the pop-sci article does that fairly thoroughly.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 12, 2021, 06:39:37 AM
Colloquial among a certain specialty of science, this "second brain (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enteric_nervous_system)" stuff. I've heard the term before, but might give you a blank look if you said, "Hey, did you know you have a second brain?" Nonetheless it is a part of the nervous system. In the fanciful way of a dear friend, I will go so far as to say that it may even have a sort of personality.   :thumbsup2:

"The 'Second Brain' in Your Gut Might Have Evolved Before The Brain in Your Head" | Science Alert (https://www.sciencealert.com/we-have-a-brain-like-system-in-our-guts-and-it-may-have-evolved-before-brains-did)

QuoteThe enteric nervous system (ENS) in our gut operates a lot like other neural networks in the brain and the spinal cord – so much so that it's often called the 'second brain'. Now a new study has revealed more about how exactly the ENS works.

Using a recently developed technique combining high-resolution video recordings with an analysis of biological electrical activity, scientists were able to study the colons of mice, and in particular the way that the gut moves its contents along.

One of the key findings was discovering how the thousands of neurons inside the ENS communicate with each other, causing contractions in the gastrointestinal tract to aid the digestive process. Up until now, it wasn't clear how these neurons were able to join forces to do this.

"Interestingly, the same neural circuit was activated during both propulsive and non-propulsive contractions," says neurophysiologist Nick Spencer from Flinders University in Australia.

The team found large bunches of connecting neurons firing to propel the contents of the colon further down the gut, via both excitatory (causing action) and inhibitory (blocking action) motor neurons.

The discovery means the ENS is made up of a more advanced network of circuitry, covering a wider section of the gut and involving a greater amount of different types of neurons working in tandem than had previously been thought.

Another important finding is that this activity is significantly different from the propulsion that's seen in other muscle organs around the body that don't have a built-in nervous system, such as lymphatic vessels, ureters, or the portal vein.

"The mechanism identified is more complex than expected and vastly different from fluid propulsion along other hollow smooth muscle organs," the researchers explain in their paper.

The team says it backs up the hypothesis that the ENS is in fact the 'first brain' rather than the second one – suggesting that it may have evolved in animals a long time before our actual brains took their current form.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/we-have-a-brain-like-system-in-our-guts-and-it-may-have-evolved-before-brains-did)]

The paper appears to be open access.

"Long range synchronization within the enteric nervous system underlies propulsion along the large intestine in mice" | Nature Communications Biology (https://www.nature.com/articles/s42003-021-02485-4)

QuoteAbstract:

How the Enteric Nervous System (ENS) coordinates propulsion of content along the gastrointestinal (GI)-tract has been a major unresolved issue. We reveal a mechanism that explains how ENS activity underlies propulsion of content along the colon.

We used a recently developed high-resolution video imaging approach with concurrent electrophysiological recordings from smooth muscle, during fluid propulsion. Recordings showed pulsatile firing of excitatory and inhibitory neuromuscular inputs not only in proximal colon, but also distal colon, long before the propagating contraction invades the distal region.

During propulsion, wavelet analysis revealed increased coherence at ~2 Hz over large distances between the proximal and distal regions. Therefore, during propulsion, synchronous firing of descending inhibitory nerve pathways over long ranges aborally (https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/aboral) acts to suppress smooth muscle from contracting, counteracting the excitatory nerve pathways over this same region of colon. This delays muscle contraction downstream, ahead of the advancing contraction.

The mechanism identified is more complex than expected and vastly different from fluid propulsion along other hollow smooth muscle organs; like lymphatic vessels, portal vein, or ureters, that evolved without intrinsic neurons.

[¶ added. - R]




Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Ecurb Noselrub on August 12, 2021, 07:28:38 PM
I've always known that my gut has its own personality. It's a bit like a wolf - growling, howling, tearing at its prey.  It has certain demands and often overcomes the executive functions of my upstairs brain. It's a beast.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on August 13, 2021, 08:59:26 PM
Mine definitely doesn't always listen to me.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on August 13, 2021, 11:34:06 PM
I guess this lends some scientific basis for the claim that some people talk out their asses.

I'm grinding my way Through Steven Pinker's "The Better Angels of our Nature". The brain stuff is quite interesting. He discusses regions and what they generally do. I was an electrical and then mechanical design and test engineer (though my degree is in physics) and I never went into the biological side.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on August 21, 2021, 08:37:45 AM
From a second brain in the gut to mini-brains in glass, with proto-mini-eyeballs. 👀

"Scientists Grew Stem Cell 'Mini Brains'. Then, The Brains Sort-of Developed Eyes" | Science Alert (https://www.sciencealert.com/scientists-used-stem-cells-to-make-mini-brains-they-grew-rudimentary-eyes)

Quote
(https://i.imgur.com/BLfIuPW.jpg)
Brain organoid with optic cups at day 60 of development.
Image credit: Gabriel et al., Cell Stem Cell




Mini brains grown in a lab from stem cells have spontaneously developed rudimentary eye structures, scientists report in a fascinating new paper.

On tiny, human-derived brain organoids grown in dishes, two bilaterally symmetrical optic cups were seen to grow, mirroring the development of eye structures in human embryos. This incredible result will help us to better understand the process of eye differentiation and development, as well as eye diseases.

"Our work highlights the remarkable ability of brain organoids to generate primitive sensory structures that are light sensitive and harbor cell types similar to those found in the body," said neuroscientist Jay Gopalakrishnan of University Hospital Düsseldorf in Germany.

"These organoids can help to study brain-eye interactions during embryo development, model congenital retinal disorders, and generate patient-specific retinal cell types for personalized drug testing and transplantation therapies."

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/scientists-used-stem-cells-to-make-mini-brains-they-grew-rudimentary-eyes)]

The paper appears to be open access:

"Human brain organoids assemble functionally integrated bilateral optic vesicles" | Cell Stem Cell (https://www.cell.com/cell-stem-cell/fulltext/S1934-5909(21)00295-2)

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Davin on August 27, 2021, 03:25:16 PM
It's kind of cute.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on August 27, 2021, 05:36:42 PM
:lol: Googly eyes on the brain? Where's Silver!?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: xSilverPhinx on August 30, 2021, 04:31:42 PM
Quote from: Dark Lightning on August 27, 2021, 05:36:42 PM
:lol: Googly eyes on the brain? Where's Silver!?

:lol: I'm here, trying to catch up! :grin:

I saw that article about the mini-brain with Googly eyes a few days ago, and I thought the exact same thing!  :P
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on November 08, 2021, 05:40:06 AM
Quote from: xSilverPhinx on August 30, 2021, 04:31:42 PM
Quote from: Dark Lightning on August 27, 2021, 05:36:42 PM
:lol: Googly eyes on the brain? Where's Silver!?

:lol: I'm here, trying to catch up! :grin:

I saw that article about the mini-brain with Googly eyes a few days ago, and I thought the exact same thing!  :P

You couldn't make it up, and a natural for this thread.  :maskwink:







I looked over the posts here mentioning Alzheimer's disease going back over more than a decade, and was reminded of so many tentatively hopeful things that have merited notice. Maybe this is another one. . . .

"Cause of Alzheimer's progression in the brain" | ScienceDaily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/10/211029152240.htm)

QuoteFor the first time, researchers have used human data to quantify the speed of different processes that lead to Alzheimer's disease and found that it develops in a very different way than previously thought. Their results could have important implications for the development of potential treatments.

The international team, led by the University of Cambridge, found that instead of starting from a single point in the brain and initiating a chain reaction which leads to the death of brain cells, Alzheimer's disease reaches different regions of the brain early. How quickly the disease kills cells in these regions, through the production of toxic protein clusters, limits how quickly the disease progresses overall.

The researchers used post-mortem brain samples from Alzheimer's patients, as well as PET scans from living patients, who ranged from those with mild cognitive impairment to those with full-blown Alzheimer's disease, to track the aggregation of tau, one of two key proteins implicated in the condition.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/10/211029152240.htm)]

The paper is open access:

"In vivo rate-determining steps of tau seed accumulation in Alzheimer's disease" | Science Advances (https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/sciadv.abh1448)

QuoteAbstract:

Both the replication of protein aggregates and their spreading throughout the brain are implicated in the progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, the rates of these processes are unknown and the identity of the rate-determining process in humans has therefore remained elusive.

By bringing together chemical kinetics with measurements of tau seeds and aggregates across brain regions, we can quantify their replication rate in human brains. Notably, we obtain comparable rates in several different datasets, with five different methods of tau quantification, from postmortem seed amplification assays to tau PET studies in living individuals.

Our results suggest that from Braak stage III onward, local replication, rather than spreading between brain regions, is the main process controlling the overall rate of accumulation of tau in neocortical regions. The number of seeds doubles only every ∼5 years. Thus, limiting local replication likely constitutes the most promising strategy to control tau accumulation during AD.

[¶ added. - R]


Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on November 13, 2021, 05:53:20 AM
Ah, here we go with some splendid cyborg news, even if a bit late--the paper was published this past Spring.  :tinfoil:

"Brain Implant Translates Paralyzed Man's Thoughts Into Text With 94% Accuracy" | Science Alert (https://www.sciencealert.com/brain-implant-enables-paralyzed-man-to-communicate-thoughts-via-imaginary-handwriting)

QuoteA man paralyzed from the neck down due to a spinal cord injury he sustained in 2007 has shown he can communicate his thoughts, thanks to a brain implant system that translates his imagined handwriting into actual text.

The device – part of a longstanding research collaboration called BrainGate (https://www.sciencealert.com/this-neural-implant-lets-als-patients-type-words-with-their-thoughts) – is a brain-computer interface (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brain%E2%80%93computer_interface) (BCI), that uses artificial intelligence (https://www.sciencealert.com/artificial-intelligence) (AI) to interpret signals of neural activity generated during handwriting.

In this case, the man – called T5 in the study, and who was 65 years of age at the time of the research – wasn't doing any actual writing, as his hand, along with all his limbs, had been paralyzed for several years.

But during the experiment, reported in Nature earlier in the year, the man concentrated as if he were writing – effectively, thinking about making the letters with an imaginary pen and paper.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/brain-implant-enables-paralyzed-man-to-communicate-thoughts-via-imaginary-handwriting)]

Baby steps. If . . . 

If the rate of advance of this technology matches that of the rest of the electronic world, it may not be long till we have something that approaches the cyborg people of speculative fiction.

Oh, and the paper (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-021-03506-2) is behind a paywall.

QuoteAbstract:

Brain–computer interfaces (BCIs) can restore communication to people who have lost the ability to move or speak. So far, a major focus of BCI research has been on restoring gross motor skills, such as reaching and grasping or point-and-click typing with a computer cursor.

However, rapid sequences of highly dexterous behaviours, such as handwriting or touch typing, might enable faster rates of communication. Here we developed an intracortical BCI that decodes attempted handwriting movements from neural activity in the motor cortex and translates it to text in real time, using a recurrent neural network decoding approach.

With this BCI, our study participant, whose hand was paralysed from spinal cord injury, achieved typing speeds of 90 characters per minute with 94.1% raw accuracy online, and greater than 99% accuracy offline with a general-purpose autocorrect. To our knowledge, these typing speeds exceed those reported for any other BCI, and are comparable to typical smartphone typing speeds of individuals in the age group of our participant (115 characters per minute).

Finally, theoretical considerations explain why temporally complex movements, such as handwriting, may be fundamentally easier to decode than point-to-point movements. Our results open a new approach for BCIs and demonstrate the feasibility of accurately decoding rapid, dexterous movements years after paralysis.

[¶ added. - R]
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Tank on November 13, 2021, 09:16:26 AM
 :love: :frolic: :love:
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on November 15, 2021, 09:04:08 AM
  :beer:






The deep intertwining of the mind and the body seems to be shown once again in this study. This and other evidence demonstrates that they are inseparable, myths notwithstanding.

"Chronic Blocked Nose? New Research Links It to Changes in Brain Activity" | Science Alert (https://www.sciencealert.com/a-chronic-stuffy-nose-seems-to-be-linked-to-changes-in-brain-activity)

QuoteChronic rhinosinusitis, which causes a persistent blocked nose and headaches among other symptoms, affects 11 percent of people in the US – and new research has found a link between the condition and changes in brain activity.

The team behind the study is hoping that the link will help explain some of the other common effects of the persistent inflammation: finding it hard to focus, struggling with bouts of depression, having trouble sleeping, and dizziness.

Finding a connection between the underlying disease and the neural processing happening elsewhere could be vital in understanding the chronic condition, along with efforts to find better and more effective ways to treat it.

[. . .]

Although this new research doesn't show that chronic sinus inflammation directly causes changes in brain activity, the association is strong enough to make it worthy of further investigation: future studies could look at how this brain activity changed after treatment for those diagnosed with chronic rhinosinusitis, for example.

For now, the researchers say that medical professionals should be more mindful of the mental health symptoms that go along with diseases like the sinus inflammation one studied here – and how they might be playing out in the rest of the body.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/a-chronic-stuffy-nose-seems-to-be-linked-to-changes-in-brain-activity)]

The paper (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaotolaryngology/article-abstract/2778439) is behind a paywall.

Quote
Key points

Question  Is sinonasal inflammation associated with functional brain connectivity?

Findings  In this case-control study of 22 patients with chronic rhinosinusitis and 22 healthy controls, participants with sinonasal inflammation showed decreased brain connectivity within the frontoparietal network, a major functional hub. This region also showed increased connectivity to areas that activate during introspective processing and decreased connectivity to areas that are involved in detection and response to stimuli.

Meaning  This study provides initial evidence for alterations in functional brain connectivity as a potential basis for cognitive dysfunction seen in patients with chronic rhinosinusitis.

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Recusant on June 23, 2022, 07:40:46 AM
Our beloved neuroscientist has gone walkabout, but the brain stories continue . . .

This one isn't surprising. Maybe respirators will eventually become a common fashion accessory. :maskwink:

"Toxic Particles Once Inhaled May Travel Directly to The Brain, Study Suggests" | Science Alerts (https://www.sciencealert.com/researchers-uncover-a-potential-highway-that-carries-air-pollution-to-the-brain)

QuoteAir pollution doesn't just impact the health of your lungs and heart. Recent research has found fine particulate matter can also cause damage to the brain, and scientists think they've finally figured out how.

In mouse models, it appears that ultra-fine particles in the air can enter the lungs, seep into the bloodstream, and ultimately invade the brain.

Once the toxins are present in neurological tissue, they are much harder for the immune system to clear. In fact, the authors found airborne particles were retained in the brain for longer than any other organ in the mouse body.

It's not yet clear if the same pathways exist in humans, but the findings suggest that if particles are small enough, they can slip past the blood brain barrier – a check point that usually stops dangerous solutes and other harmful components in blood from reaching the central nervous system.

A leaky blood brain barrier has been linked to cognitive damage before, but the current study is one of the first to show air pollutants sneaking by the brain's border patrol.

[Continues . . . (https://www.sciencealert.com/researchers-uncover-a-potential-highway-that-carries-air-pollution-to-the-brain)]

The paper is apparently not yet available. Link to release from the University of Birmingham on EurekAlert. (https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/956357)
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on June 24, 2022, 03:35:55 AM
I spent many long hours over several years, polishing aluminum parts for a measuring instrument that I manufactured.  Sometimes I used a suitable mask, other times, too many times, I did not use the mask,

To be sure, I have breathed a lot of microscopically fine aluminum dust. That could be partly responsible for my admittedly diminished mental acumen.

Too soon late, too soon smart. 
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on June 24, 2022, 01:57:26 PM
I rebuilt the carburetor on my antique truck the other day. I wonder how many chlorofluorocarbon molecules are in between my ears, even though I did it outside in the open air, and wore gloves.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on June 24, 2022, 06:27:22 PM
what kind of measuring instrument? air flow?

what kind of antique truck?

stop with this vagueness immediately

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on June 24, 2022, 06:54:51 PM
It's a 1970 Chevrolet 3/4 ton truck. It has a Mark IV big block 402 cubic inch engine that has been rebuilt once, so it's been rebored to probably 410 cubic inches. It has a Quadrajet four barrel carburetor on it. We use it to tow the travel trailer. It is a beast.

Looks like this, but orange instead of bronze, and the paint isn't that nice.

https://www.mecum.com/lots/FL0111-101873/1970-chevrolet-c20-pickup/
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on June 24, 2022, 10:00:58 PM
i love those big blocks.

what do you have in there for a transmission?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on June 24, 2022, 11:05:44 PM
Turbo Hydramatic 400. 3.56 Rear axle ratio.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on June 24, 2022, 11:44:08 PM
cool

i had a turbo 400 with a 350 in my old hudson.

very tough transmission they were.

the original military humvees used turbo 400s, as did the period rolls royce
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on June 25, 2022, 12:43:13 AM
Rolls also use the Frigidaire AC compressor back in the '60s and '70s, iirc. "Sacrilege!"  ;D
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on June 25, 2022, 03:35:04 AM
Measuring instruments were aimed at the screen printing and sifting industry.  The tools measured the tension in a membrane.  It was also useful to measure the tension in aircraft fabric and a few other  things like audio speaker diaphragms, 

I also made meters to measure the relative hardness of elastomers, including racing tires. Those were designed mainly to measure the Shore A hardness of screen printing squeegees.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on June 25, 2022, 08:47:32 PM
Quote from: Icarus on June 25, 2022, 03:35:04 AMMeasuring instruments were aimed at the screen printing and sifting industry.  The tools measured the tension in a membrane.  It was also useful to measure the tension in aircraft fabric and a few other  things like audio speaker diaphragms, 

I also made meters to measure the relative hardness of elastomers, including racing tires. Those were designed mainly to measure the Shore A hardness of screen printing squeegees.

how did the fabric tensioning thing work? was this some sort of durometer?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on June 26, 2022, 05:10:48 AM
The tension meter used a spring or weight loaded narrow bar to push down on the fabric. The plunger with the bar was engaged with a dial indicator.  The depth of depression in the fabric was translated on the indicator dial to Newtons per centimeter of tension.   

N/cm could be converted to pounds perinch but no one in the industry used that sort of measurement designation.  It was/is strictly metric stuff.

One day I may post a picture of one of my meters.

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on June 26, 2022, 05:29:12 AM
Quote from: Icarus on June 26, 2022, 05:10:48 AMThe tension meter used a spring or weight loaded narrow bar to push down on the fabric. The plunger with the bar was engaged with a dial indicator.  The depth of depression in the fabric was translated on the indicator dial to Newtons per centimeter of tension.   

N/cm could be converted to pounds perinch but no one in the industry used that sort of measurement designation.  It was/is strictly metric stuff.

One day I may post a picture of one of my meters.



how did you control for differing elastcity in th efabric?

im guessing that different fabrics would show different deflection for the same weighted probe?

 i iknow absolutely nothing about aircraft fabric

Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on June 29, 2022, 05:21:28 AM
Modulous of elasticity can be applied to various materials.  A rubber membrane will move farther for a given pressure than a more rigid membrane like polyester. Even though it moves farther for a given pressure,  the tension in the fabric will be proportional.   The meter accounts for that.  If the depresser moves farther, the meter indicates less tension. See Hookes law
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: billy rubin on June 29, 2022, 06:17:45 PM
when was the last use of fabric in aerospace? or is it still used?

i was amazed when i learned the B-17 had a fabric tail section

what about stuff like sailplanes?
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Dark Lightning on June 29, 2022, 08:19:41 PM
A lot of spacecraft structures are graphite fiber reinforced plastic. It's a woven sheet that is laid up into tubes and sheets. Stealth aircraft use a similar process for their structures. Probably not what you meant, though.
Title: Re: All things brain...
Post by: Icarus on June 30, 2022, 11:31:18 PM
Back to brains.........Recent studies report that parts of the human brain have higher temperatures than any other parts of the body.  Temps in the 105 F range are reported.  Those temps are variable and present in all of us. Females show about three quarters of a degree higher temps than males.  The temperatures vary throughout the day and during sleep.

That gives new meaning to expressions like hot head.