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Understanding the “It” in “Use It or Lose It”

From Macro to Micro: A Visu­al Guide to the Brain (IEEE Spec­trum)

In the human brain, high­er-lev­el infor­ma­tion pro­cess­ing occurs in the neo­cor­tex, neur­al tis­sue that forms the out­er lay­er of the cere­bral cor­tex. In its intri­cate folds, brain cells work togeth­er to inter­pret sen­so­ry infor­ma­tion and to form thoughts and plans. The neo­cor­tex is divid­ed into regions that take the lead on dif­fer­ent types of pro­cess­ing. How­ev­er, much of today’s neu­ro­science research focus­es on map­ping the con­nec­tome: the neur­al con­nec­tions between regions…Keep Read­ing Arti­cle.

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Forget thinking vs. feeling dichotomy. Think/ feel holistic brain functioning

brain teasers cognitive stimulationMen­tal Math and the Fine-Tun­ing of Emo­tions (The Dana Foun­da­tion)

You often hear the word “cal­cu­lat­ing” used to describe some­one who always seems to act delib­er­ate­ly, guid­ed by rea­son rather than emo­tion. The idea behind this char­ac­ter­i­za­tion is that human nature strad­dles a deep divide between think­ing and feel­ing, but cur­rent research sug­gests oth­er­wise. Brain-imag­ing stud­ies, in par­tic­u­lar, reveal an over­lap between the sites in the brain that make it pos­si­ble for us to per­form men­tal arith­metic and those that enable us to reg­u­late our emo­tions. In fact, these two dis­sim­i­lar-seem­ing func­tions are housed in the same neigh­bor­hood of the cere­bral cor­tex. But they don’t just reside near each other—they actu­al­ly work togeth­er. “It’s pos­si­ble that train­ing the brain with men­tal math strength­ens the capac­i­ty for emo­tion­al reap­praisal, or per­haps con­tin­u­al­ly run­ning the process of emo­tion­al reap­praisal increas­es the abil­i­ty for men­tal cal­cu­la­tions of oth­er kinds like men­tal arith­metic.”

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A new era of brain cartography, powered by neuroimaging and machine learning

-- M GLASSER, D VAN ESSEN/WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY

– M GLASSER, D VAN ESSEN/WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY

Human brain mapped in unprece­dent­ed detail (Nature):

Think of a spin­ning globe and the patch­work of coun­tries it depicts: such maps help us to under­stand where we are, and that nations dif­fer from one anoth­er. Now, neu­ro­sci­en­tists have chart­ed an equiv­a­lent map of the brain’s out­er­most lay­er — the cere­bral cor­tex — sub­di­vid­ing each hemisphere’s moun­tain- and val­ley-like folds into Read the rest of this entry »

#13. Brain teaser to exercise your cognitive skills: Where do words go?

Temporal lobe Frontal LobeWords are stored in the tem­po­ral lobe of your brain (in green on the cere­bral cor­tex image  to the left). But on which brain hemi­sphere, right or left? As you know, your brain has two sides (two hemi­spheres) con­nected by the cor­pus cal­lo­sum. You have one tem­po­ral lobe on each side of the brain.

If you are right-hand­ed, Read the rest of this entry »

Master a new language and grow hippocampus and cerebral cortex

Learn­ing New Lan­guages Helps The Brain Grow (Med­ical News):

The learn­ing of lan­guages allows the brain to stay “in shape”, by caus­ing cer­tain parts of the brain to grow, includ­ing the hip­pocam­pus and three areas of the cere­bral cortex…This find­ing came from sci­en­tists at Lund Uni­ver­si­ty, after exam­in­ing young recruits with a tal­ent for acquir­ing lan­guages who were able to speak in Ara­bic, Russ­ian, or Dari flu­ent­ly after just 13 months of learn­ing, before which they had no knowl­edge of the lan­guages Read the rest of this entry »

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