The primary component of the central nervous system, which, along with the spinal cord, controls the body of bilaterally symmetrical beings.

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What are the factors that control the speed of propagation of neuronal signals?

If we consider an analogy between a wire and a neuron there may be some resemblance between the factors controlling the data flow rate. For example the increased width of wire leads to decreased ...
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394 views

Is there any size limit to the amount of information a human (or other) brain can hold

Im not sure how this would ever be tested but is there a limit to how much the brain can 'hold' before it reaches capacity ? I guess this could also be interpreted in terms of memory, as how well ...
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152 views

How is information sent from limbs to the brain exactly?

Say you have a needle, and you poke a very specific area on your left thumb. A signal gets sent from that nerve up your spine and into your brain. How does the brain know exactly where this signal ...
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68 views

Biological advantage of electric synapses

Electric synapses are synapses that do not process information but simply foward one action potential from one neuron to the next. There are no neurotransmitters, no inhibitory and exitatory ...
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40 views

What are limitations on the number of objects the eye determine at a glance?

Take two people Sam (average human) and Jack. Jack says to Sam "I'm going to show you some skittles (or other object) and I want you to tell me as quick as you can how many I'm holding." He opens ...
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80 views

Is there a hormone combination that makes humans grumpy?

Imagine a typical situation that is likely to give rise to a bad temper within an individual: a person is awoken very early in the morning by a sound of a lawn being mowed next door. Unlike expected ...
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52 views

Do people who have been blind all their lives dream?

Do the people who have been blind all their lives dream and do they experience or report "imagery" in the dreams?
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45 views

How can I determine the purity of cells isolated from rat brains if I cannot use FACS, Immunohistochemistry or SEM anaysis?

Please help. I know how to isolate the different cells (astrocytes, other glial cells, neurons and synaptosomes) from brain tissue using a Ficoll-based separation but how do I determine the purity of ...
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76 views

How Behind is the Human Mind (Latency of the Senses)

I would like to know if there is any research into the latency of human perception. Particulary: What is the minimum time for various inputs (vision, touch, sound) to be recognized by the conscious ...
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212 views

Ventral stream pathway and architecture proposed by Poggio's group

Please can you give me a very brief explanation about all functions in the ventral stream architecture summarized in this figure: This figure is from Serre et al.'s A quantitative theory of ...
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67 views

Brain response frequencies while sleeping

I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask this but Biology seemed to fit best. I'm trying to find out what frequencies the brain responds to best while sleeping. The reason for this is recently ...
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88 views

Electrodes in the brain and 'repetitive orgasms' [closed]

The advent of chlorpromazine in 1955 put an end to one of the more bizarre chapters in American psychiatry.$^1$ Dr. Robert Heath implanted wires or delivered injections of acetylcholine (a ...
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59 views

Is there a correlation between brain size and amount of sleep? [closed]

As far as we know, sleep seems to be the part of the daily cycle when executive functions are resting and memories are fortifying. Many, but not all, of the functions that become dysfunctional upon ...
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59 views

The Operation of tuning in the S1 layer of ventral model

According to my previous question in ventral Stream pathway and architecture, I want now to get a brief example about how the S1 layer is constructed. In other words, how all the simple units are ...
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59 views

Deducing synaptic strength from electron micrographs?

There are several promising techniques for connectomics based on iterative sectioning and imaging of tissue with scanning electron microscopes (e.g. FIB-SEM and ATUM) By looking at such micrographs, ...
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64 views

Iron metabolism in the brain

I did an expression profiling from publicly available RNAseq data for mouse tissues. While for liver and testes I am getting expected proteins in the top highly expressed mRNAs, for brain I am getting ...
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258 views

What is the timing of information assimilation within a human brain? [closed]

A little background: I'm an avid dreamer and have great dream recall, sometimes up to 5-7 per night. In my experience, I can sometimes trace some elements of the dream to an event that occured ...
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237 views

Can human brain memory be removed by EMP?

The human brain is the most complicated human organ so it is hard to examine it completely but based on what we know do you think (or do you know from some source) if a human memory can be removed by ...
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What is in the space between neurons in a brain?

When neuron animations are displayed, there are frequently seen neurons, axons arranged in a lattice with a lot of empty space between. I'm interested if there is indeed empty space in the brain, or ...
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2answers
2k views

Which hormones can cross the blood brain barrier?

Can hormones such as testosterone, aldosterone and estrogen cross the blood brain barrier? I looked on Wikipedia and there no mention of it in the testosterone article. Through Googling around I also ...
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1answer
72 views

How small does a nanobot have to be to “swim through the brain” and access any neuron it wants to?

I read on this question What is in the space between neurons in a brain? that there is actually not much empty space in a brain. But my question is slightly different. Is there a visual demonstration ...
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3answers
212 views

Why do we dream?

Is there any specific reason behind why we dream. Why sometimes we are getting wierd and unusual dreams. Sometimes we cant even recall what we dreamt off. Why this happens?
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77 views

How do we memorize something?

When we see something, how and where in the brain do we remember it and are able to recognize it later? What happens in the brain that makes this possible?
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61 views

What are the total number of action potentials in the human brain?

Is there an approximate figure of the total number of action potentials in the human brain? It's my understanding that there are ~ 60 billion neurons in the brain with ~ 100 trillion connections ...
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1answer
152 views

Why does chewing enrage me?

Whether it's snacking on chips, munching on salad, or simply chewing gum, when I hear someone do it within an earshot, it drives me completely bonkers! It doesn't matter if it's my girlfriend, my ...
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1answer
53 views

When a thought 'crosses your mind', does it literally cross between left and right cerebral hemispheres?

I've heard that part of cognitive processing is information passing between left and right cerebral hemispheres. This is what happens in the Cerebral Cortex which is divided into two hemispheres, ...
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127 views

Can a brain be transplanted?

Is it possible to transplant a brain and would it keep the memory? If not, what would be the prerequisite to transplant one?
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What causes autism?

What causes autism? By this I don't mean what is to blame i.e. Vaccines, Gluten or Pharmaceuticals etc.. I mean what exactly is happening in the brain to cause the autistic behaviors such as little ...
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37 views

Is it possible to process electrical signals from the brain and interpret the results as exact thoughts?

If the brain uses extremely low voltage signals to communicate (from what I understand around 100 mV), what sort of breakthroughs would be necessary to intercept these signals and interpret them as ...
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1answer
87 views

Why do the neuron pathways decussate?

I learn about the brain right now, and there are crossing of neuron pathways everywhere; in the thalamus, the medulla oblongata, the pyramidal tract... And I don't understand why? What is the reason ...
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1answer
68 views

What is the creature with the lowest neuron count that demonstrates cognition beyond reflexes?

I'm under the impression that nematode worms just perform the same scripted actions over and over again in response to specific stimuli. They have 302 neurons. Chimpanzees display problem solving ...
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1answer
65 views

How good is information transfer between the hemispheres of the brain?

I sometimes listen to lectures on my phone using ear buds, but occasionally with only one ear bud in. Is the other half of my brain losing out on any aspect of the lecture? Just how good is the corpus ...
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1answer
65 views

Can cerebrospinal fluid deliver nutrients/drugs to neurons during sleep?

I'm looking at this article on the possible mechanism of detoxifying brain during sleep using cerebrospinal fluid. It states that at night, the space between neurons may allow better (up to 20x) ...
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322 views

Do brain cells shrink during REM sleep or a lucid dream?

In this BBC news article a study shows that during sleep brain cells shrink to open up the gaps between neurons and allow fluid to wash the brain clean. But do the cells shrink and undergo the whole ...
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486 views

Why does non-continuous sleep makes you feel tired?

Let's say, hypothetically, that you fell asleep at 10PM, and you were woken up by a noise at 1AM. If you went back to sleep immediately and woke up at 6AM, you will feel tired even though you had ...
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40 views

Is severe but short-term pain worse than moderate but prolonged pain for the body?

I'm wondering about the effects of different durations and intensities of pain on the body. So the two can be compared, let's say that the cause of pain is the same in both cases, but in one the ...
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1answer
45 views

Anatomy of nervous system's sensory pathways

When I touch my hand on a hot stove, I feel pain. I'm interested in knowing all the main "endpoints" (components/parts of the body) that are involved in relaying this pain signal. As I understand it ...
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1answer
230 views

Why do we suddenly forget things, like PIN or phone numbers, that we've known for years?

Is it common to forget a 4 or 5 numeric code which has been used extensively for months and well remembered? There's an article on the guardian describing this phenomenon and by the number of ...
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37 views

Why did the Brain develop in the front in most organisms?

I was wondering my most, well pretty much all organism with a brain have it right in front of their bodies or at the top.
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What is the biological basis of “energy” that extraverted humans draw from social engagements and introverts expend?

This question is related to this question about introverts becoming exhausted after extended social events on cognitive sciences stack exchange. As I read more on the topic of human ...
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72 views

When the mind is highly active, roughly how many neurons become excited in one second?

I'm curios to know how many times neurons send signals in one second when the brain is highly active (Highly active meaning during difficult problem solving, or any task that might bring the brain to ...
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58 views

Does the Jungian notion of collective unconsciousness have any legitimacy in the light of modern neurobiology and epigenetics?

Carl Jung has long ago proposed a rather controversial notion of collective unconsciousness [1, 2, 3], a form of the unconscious (that part of the mind containing memories and impulses of which ...
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TV's so loud when I turn over

Scenario: I'm about to fall asleep with the T.V. on. Having completely forgotten that it was, no longer even hearing it, just before falling asleep I turn over with a 'fresh' ear and it's blaring. If ...
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264 views

What “emotions” can a snake feel?

Short: Thinking in particular of a Royal Python (US: Ball Python) such as some people keep as exotic companion animals, what sorts of "emotions" or "feelings" are they capable of? Long: ...
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58 views

What causes headaches (biologically)? What does it mean directly? [closed]

Even though your brain can't feel pain, thingies in your head are installed to compensate for that. Once I thought your head starts to hurt when your brain is tired. I can't believe this any more. ...
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48 views

How well do we notice asynchronicity?

I'm stopped at a stoplight and, with nothing to do, my thoughts wander to the timed don't-walk sign that governs any pedestrians who might wish to cross the street I'm driving along. I can see two ...
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3answers
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Does Darwin's Theory of Evolution refute Terence McKenna theory “Stoned Ape” theory of human evolution?

I haven't read it but I'm asking for a quick answer. As far as I know, Terence McKenna's theory of evolution in humans main concept is that a hominid has tried in their diet psilocybin mushrooms, and ...
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3answers
336 views

What does orbital mean in orbital frontal cortex?

Orbital frontal cortex is where decisions are made. What does the word orbital there mean? I looked around in wikipedia and never find it.
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123 views

Molecules and human memory

Has it been demonstrated that the memory of human brain is just connections between neurons, not "long" molecules such as RNA or proteins?
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How precise is EEG?

Imagine we want to read impulses within single neurons in the brain. Can we do that now for a single region within the brain? If not, what is the smallest region that can be monitored for an activity ...