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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3answers
13k views

If the brain has no pain receptors, how come you can get a headache?

I've read many years ago in books, that the brain has no nerves on it, and if someone was touching your brain, you couldn't feel a thing. Just two days before now, I had a very bad migraine, due to a ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Why do the two hemispheres of the brain control the opposite sides of the body?

Why does the left hemisphere control the right and the right hemisphere control the left? I googled it but didn't find a good answer regarding this. Could someone explain? Does this adaptation help ...
12
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1answer
165 views

Can parts of a human brain be asleep independently of each other, or vary in the times required for them to fall asleep?

I know that some birds and marine animals can continue complicated activity (swimming, flying?) while one hemisphere of their brain is asleep. I'm interested if human brain has some parts of it that ...
9
votes
1answer
317 views

Why does this illusion work?

This is another image I found on Google+ All lines are absolutely straight, parallel and perpendicular but why does it appear to have a curvature? Related: How does this illusion work?
9
votes
1answer
321 views

Is it possible to lose synapses over time?

I mean, what if a person is for a long time submitted to conditions in which his mental capacities are not explored, are the synapses undone? I've heard that drugs may cause such an effect, but what ...
8
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2answers
352 views

Do memories have mass?

If it were possible to live forever, would our brains grow infinitely with the number of memories that we store? Or would we remove old memories as we create new ones?
8
votes
1answer
748 views

Disadvantages of unihemispheric sleep

Is is well known fact that marine mammals and some birds can sleep with one brain hemisphere at a time, since it's essential for their survival. However, at least in my opinion, such mechanism would ...
7
votes
1answer
88 views

What happens when we know that there is something that we forgot but we can't remember what it was?

I think it happens for everyone that sometimes we go to a room and forget why we went there. Is there any research or article on this?
7
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1answer
94 views

Is it a limitation of the eyes, or the brain, that we can't see a moving bullet?

Are the photoreceptors in our eyes not fast enough to register the fast moving bullet, or is the brain not powerful enough to make sense of something happening that fast?
6
votes
1answer
229 views

Influence of alcohol on brain cells

As I am not related to biology, I would appreciate if you can keep your answers as simple as possible. My question is about the influence of alcohol on the brain. As far as I know, drinking alcohol ...
6
votes
1answer
817 views

How does this illusion work?

I found this image on Google+ If you shake your head you can see a portrait of a person. Can anyone explain how the image is constructed in the brain?
6
votes
3answers
136 views

Why are males more likely than females to have autism spectrum disorder?

The male to female ratio in autism spectrum disorder is around 4:1. However it seems ASD is not a simple X-linked disorder. Then how is it possible males are more susceptible than females, if the ...
6
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1answer
63 views

What is meant by “neurotransmitters flooding the brain”?

I frequently hear expressions like "Dopamine flooding the brain" or "X neurotransmitter flooding the brain" used to communicate with general audiences. For example: "Following [orgasm]? oxytocin ...
4
votes
1answer
189 views

Why do humans alone have the capability to have religious/spiritual experiences?

What is it in our brain that makes having such experiences possible? I assume other species don't have these. Sure there are instances in the natural world where you can see individuals of the species ...
4
votes
2answers
895 views

How are babies born without a brain?

In the United States, anencephaly occurs in about 1 out of every 10,000 births. There are several forms of this condition, wherein the forebrain is absent. The forebrain is host to most of the higher ...
4
votes
2answers
87 views

Which part of the brain needs to be shut down to lose conciousness?

Whether it is mechanical (trauma), chemical (anaesthesia) or electrical - which part of the brain is shut down to cause loss of consciousness?
4
votes
1answer
237 views

What is the average volume of the hippocampus?

I'm trying to find any information on sizes of the hippocampus? Ideally in the average adult male & female brain
4
votes
1answer
128 views

How is consciousness linked to the brain?

Could the brain be working without consciousness? Does the brain interact with consciousness? Alternately, is it that consciousness can't really control the brain, and you only have the impression ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

3D models of adult male brain in the Blender software? Any open-sourced version for research?

I am trying to find 3D model of brains. I am particularly interested in adult-male -brains in Blender-model. I could find such 3D models of brains for sale here but because I am researching I would ...
3
votes
1answer
70 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?
3
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1answer
32 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?
3
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1answer
80 views

Why does strenous exercise cause vision of “lights”?

I had a hard climb a week ago. I got so tired then any time I closed my eyes I saw these lights inside my head. I see these lights almost every time that I run fast or some thing like that. What are ...
3
votes
2answers
121 views

Can children restore brain cells?

By "children" I mean young people at the age of 10 or lower. I know that the adult brain cannot restore brain cells, but what about children? I mean, the brain must develop from a few cells to a 90 ...
3
votes
1answer
133 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
401 views

Why Do Nerve Signals Get Crossed?

First off, I don't know if this is a normal healthy thing to occur. There have been many times where I have an itch on say my arm and I scratch it, only to feel the scratching elsewhere on my body. I ...
3
votes
1answer
60 views

Does playing music during sleep actually suppress rather than rouse the brain?

I've long been interested in the effect of music/sound on dreaming, and even built 2 apps that play music during REM period. Now I'm looking at this article about FMRI studies of a sleeping brain, and ...
3
votes
1answer
137 views

Are there any types of cancer that cause neurons to divide?

After birth neurons generally do not divide. But is there any specific type of rare cancer or tumour where neurons divide? And if there is such a cancer, then how is it possible for a neuron to regain ...
3
votes
1answer
96 views

What is the difference between different brain regions

The brain is separated into different regions, and different regions perform different tasks. Well, what are the differences between these regions on the cellular/systemic level. The brain is made up ...
3
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0answers
57 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 ...
3
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0answers
40 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, ...
3
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0answers
49 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 ...
3
votes
0answers
41 views

Patch-Clamping Neurons Resources

Are there any lectures available on Patch-Clamping? Were can I find a mathematical model of Patch-Clamp? (that can be easily implemented in matlab). I have found some step-by-step protocols on ...
2
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3answers
127 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?
2
votes
2answers
419 views

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 ...
2
votes
2answers
607 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
73 views

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 ...
2
votes
1answer
30 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
49 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
41 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
208 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
56 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?
2
votes
3answers
108 views

Why has evolution made neurons use spiking?

I'm going to be forward and say that I'm not a biologist. I don't claim to fully understand the functionality of a neuron from an electrical/chemical perspective... I'm curiously gazing from the ...
2
votes
2answers
40 views

How would the human body adjust to sleep times if we were to live in a place with different day lengths?

You sleep at night and are active during the day that's how things work for humans, but theoretically if a human whose parents lived on earth were to be born in another planet resembling earth but the ...
2
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0answers
32 views

How do duplicate brain regions (ex: left/right amygdaloid body) operate together?

I frequently hear talk about parts of the brain like "Amygdala" or "Hypothalamus", so I looked them up in an app called "essential anatomy". What I see is that there's mirror symmetry, and most of ...
2
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0answers
40 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 ...
2
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0answers
39 views

Does Lucid Dreaming decrease the regenerative effect of sleep?

After watching this SciShow video on sleep, I wonder about lucid dreaming. Specifically: Does lucid dreaming and associated directed agency within Lucid Dreaming decrease the regenerative effect of ...
2
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0answers
186 views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of being ambidextrous?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of being ambidextrous? We have two hands and we nearly can't use one and this seems like a weakness, and a stupid one when you first think about it. But ...
2
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0answers
17 views

Effect of Ethanol on Brain Volume Measurements

I want to compare the brain sizes of two populations of fish. However, all the samples I have were fixed in 95% ethanol. As far as I know, 4% formalin is the normal fixative for soft tissues. Can I ...
2
votes
0answers
41 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 ...
2
votes
0answers
190 views

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

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 ...