For questions about the biology of the nervous system, from a macroscopic to microscopic perspective.

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6
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1answer
95 views

What functional purpose does a cortical column serve?

The Blue Brain project led by Henry Markram focused on simulating cortical columns under the idea they form basic processing units of the brain/cognitive function. What functional purpose does a ...
2
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1answer
30 views

How large is a neurotransmitter? Max and min sizes?

What size(s) are neurotransmitters? What is their size relative to the synaptic cleft? Relatively speaking, can we tell how far they must travel to cross the gap? Twice their own length? More? I ...
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2answers
62 views

How useful are neural circuits in psychology?

We can identify many kinds of patterns of how neurons connect such as lateral inhibition, negative/positive feedback, convergence, divergence, and facilitation. But have any of these circuits been ...
2
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0answers
12 views

Is there a disorder that causes one to feel heat from an inanimate object?

We just met a woman that feels heat (literally, hot enough for her to say she was burned) from inanimate objects. She says it is mainly the floors and chairs in her home, and she is unable to walk in ...
0
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1answer
33 views

Is there any way to calculate the cumulative width of synaptic clefts?

It's my understanding there are 150 trillion synapses in the human brain (give or take). Is there a way to calculate the cumulative width of all synaptic clefts associated with the synapses? I would ...
2
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1answer
33 views

What are the estimates in total neurons and average connections per neuron for each of the processing areas of the visual cortex?

I am trying to find ballpark estimates for the number of neurons in each functional area of the visual cortex (V1, V2, V3, etc). While nice if known, the numbers themselves are not as important to me ...
6
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2answers
2k views

Why is the order of white/grey matter different in the brain and spinal cord?

In the brain proper, grey matter forms the outer layer of the brain, and white matter forms the inner layer. In the spine, this is reversed: white matter forms the outer layer of the spine, and grey ...
2
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4answers
230 views

Is it possible to increase the capacity of human brain like “Lucy”?

I saw the film "Lucy" in 2015. The film says that humans can use 100% percent of the capacity of their brains. According to my personal ideas, the capacity of the brain will changed based on the ...
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0answers
16 views

Where can I find good references about the neuronal connections in various areas in the cortex?

As an example, I would like to know which Brodmann areas the layer IV in area 10 receives input from. To which degree are these connections known? What are good books or other kinds of resources that ...
3
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1answer
97 views

How to build a high sensitivity EEG headset for continual monitoring?

After having a conversation with a couple of the more popular "consumer" level EEG makers such as Versus, I have found that their monitoring abilities are either ...
5
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1answer
70 views

How is averaging used in calculating the Bereitschaftspotential?

I have a question about the averaging involved in the Bereitschaftspotential. On the wiki page you can read that, because it is so small, the Bereitschaftspotential only becomes apparent after ...
9
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2answers
125 views

Trying to understand equations in Karl Friston article

I am trying to understand a neuroscience article by Karl Friston. In it he gives three equations that are, as I understand him, equivalent or inter-convertible and refer to both physical and Shannon ...
4
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1answer
59 views

Can dendrite spines fire action potential toward the soma?

I am confused about how the signal propagates from the dendrite spines toward the soma. I believe it is commonly taught that the signal diffuses "passively", i.e. electrostatically with no ...
5
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0answers
55 views

How much of brain power consumption is for information

As previously answered on this site, the brain uses 20W of power. However, how much of this power consumption is for information processing and how much of it is for maintenance of biological ...
3
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1answer
55 views

What is forward masking

I am trying to understand what is visual masking (or more specificaly forward masking). I have read the explanation here, but still.. I understand that a background can interfere with a frontal ...
3
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1answer
27 views

Where are intrinsically bursting neurons found in the mammalian brain?

There are neurons in the brain that exhibit bursting behaviour. In some cases, this is due to interactions with the surrounding neural network. In other cases, it is due to intrinsic biological ...
4
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1answer
286 views

Physiological differences between brains of Conservatives and Liberals

I work for a non-profit research organization and I have been assigned to do research on this topic. I have been doing my best to find studies on this topic but every website and article seems to ...
3
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1answer
81 views

link between top-down (bottom-up) processing and cortex layers

What are the relations between top-down and bottom-up processings and the flows of information in the brain? For example, does top-down processing start from some layers and go to lower layers? If so ...
3
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3answers
49 views

Are there any programmes to identify modular “NeuroBricks”?

In synthetic biology, an organization called the BioBricks Foundation tries to identify modular biological components that are amenable to engineering design, and publishes them in the Registry of ...
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0answers
12 views

Where is neurogenesis absent/uncommon in the human brain? [duplicate]

I know that neurogenesis is an integral part of hippocampus, however are there parts of the brain where neurogenesis never or rarely happens? I'm assuming that any part of the brain stem does not have ...
3
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0answers
40 views

Neurotransmitter detection in the brain

How are the effects of drugs in the brain, in terms of neurotransmitters measured? For example, Selective Seretonin Reuptake Inhibitors are a class of anti-depressants. How was and is this type of ...
4
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1answer
91 views

Interpretation & Actual Result of “10% of your brain” Myth

It is well known that the common myth that an individual only ever uses 10% of their brain is.. well, a myth. I had a question about a possible interpretation of this idea, and a follow-up question ...
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0answers
85 views

What is the general frequency (or range of frequencies) of “sparks” in the human brain per minute and at what locations? [closed]

How many electrical sparks occur in the brain, on average, per minute and at what structures do they occur? For the "how many" figure, I would be happy to have ranges here from relaxed to excited ...
23
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1answer
2k views

Have the abilities of John Lorber's patients with limited cortical mass been further evaluated in adulthood?

Short of minor lesions or infarcts, most high-functioning adults have an intact cerebral cortex. Yet, a surprising result published anecdotally in Science in 1980 caused a lot of scientists to take ...
2
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1answer
102 views

Quit smoking supported by mental training

Given that mental training/workout releases acetylcholine (something I read in a popular-scientific book and on Wiki, see also below) , and that acetylcholine and nicotine bind to the same receptors. ...
5
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1answer
57 views

How exactly do “you” think and interact with your body?

It has been established that our brains control many processes that your body carries out autonomously and involuntarily. However, other actions are controlled by you. (e.g. you lift an arm, you ...
5
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1answer
83 views

Are there studies on the effect of nicotine patches on dream vividness and dream recall?

Acetylcholine plays an important role during REM Sleep. I cite an answer to the question "Why do dreams lose clarity quickly over time after we awaken?": Activity in the PFC during sleep may be ...
13
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1answer
388 views

Does cognitive training enhance dopamine release?

Joe Hardy reports on a study by Backman et al (2011) in Science, where from the authors report: Updating of working memory has been associated with striato-frontal brain regions and phasic ...
2
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2answers
63 views

How long does it take for electrical impulses from neurons to travel in the human brain?

Consider the maximal distance between two separated areas in the human brain. How fast can information via neuronal excitement travel between these two locations?
1
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1answer
116 views

How many possible states does a brain have?

Suppose I have a box, inside of which is a light which can be either on or off: it has exactly two states. Suppose I wanted to take some "snapshot" of the state of this device, and store all the ...
9
votes
1answer
222 views

How much power, in watts, does the brain use?

When IBM's Watson won on Jeopardy a few years ago, it did so using a room full of servers with a cooling system and a fat power feed, competing against a couple of humans powered by the equivalent of ...
8
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2answers
98 views

How is saccadic movement managed in the brain?

I haven't been able to find any decent articles on this specific topic. So I have three (hopefully quick) questions: What part of the brain is actively controlling saccadic movement? If this part ...
4
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0answers
26 views

How separate are the left and right hemisphere vasculature?

It appears as if there are communicating arteries between the right and left hemispheres of the brain, but it is difficult to grasp the larger picture. To what extent is the blood supply to each ...
4
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2answers
77 views

The function of pumps in forming the resting potential

I am confused by the following. Apparently the resting potential of -65mV is reached when the two forces, diffusion and electrical gradient are in equilibrium. So why does the book say "The ...
2
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2answers
165 views

How does subjective experience arise from matter?

Forgive me for lacking rigor, but if what I know is correct, it is established that consciousness and other higher functions characteristic of humans are a consequence of our cortex, specifically ...
2
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0answers
36 views

Source of sensory data related to cognitive effort

How does the brain assess cognitive effort? Is there a chemical that is being created or consumed at a rate that is proportionate to the amount of effort felt? I'm mostly interested in short term ...
4
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0answers
59 views

very weird Split Brain Dual Consciousness experiments references on Wikipedia

I have been reading about the problem of possible dual consciousness in split brain patients and I came across this wikipedia page about: ...
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0answers
28 views

How to write a neuroscience research abstract?

I might have to start working on a research abstract for college soon, and I am looking for basic tips on beginning one. I don't mean information about the research specifically; I simply mean ...
3
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0answers
45 views

Is the fight or flight response considered voluntarily or involuntarily?

I look in my rearview and see someone feet from me still speeding up and my heart rate feels like it doubles. It stayed like that for an hour. Had troubles concentrating and working well into the ...
5
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0answers
45 views

Why cerebellar input fibers use 2 ways to send a siganl to DCN?

Both groups of input fibers of cerebellum (mossy, climbing) start 2 pathways: 1) project directly to the deep nuclei 2) project to cerebellar cortex, which then (after some processing) sends ...
2
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1answer
145 views

“top-down” and “bottom-up” processes

What kind of processes are "top-down" and "bottom-up" processes in the context of processing visual information in brain? Context: ...There are discrete areas in the visual cortex dedicated to ...
6
votes
1answer
96 views

Could ketosis be therapeutic for ADHD based on the neuro-energetic theory of attention?

I'm a complete neuroscience novice so please bear with me. One of the more interesting theories of the etiology of ADHD that I've read posits that the disorder may be one of neuroenergetics - the ...
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0answers
33 views

What is the importance of Dissociation (Both Double/Single) in a Distributed Hierarchical Organisational model of brain function?

How does Dissociation fir with a Hierarchical Organisational model Like Luria's or Distributed model of Fellman & Van Essen? Also, how may patients do you think should be the minimal amount in ...
5
votes
1answer
55 views

What are 'gap junctions' (electrical synapses) for?

I was reading this and I found the following sentences: Apart from chemical synapses neurons can also be coupled by electrical synapses, so-called gap junctions. Specialized membrane proteins make ...
6
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2answers
553 views

How would synapses behave if resting potential was zero?

Assuming that the resting potential is zero and the other mechanisms were exactly the same, how would it affect the generation of spikes in terms of excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic ...
8
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1answer
102 views

Are the physical sensations of an emotion due to neural activity strictly in the brain or also in the body?

Symptoms of anxiety and anger are often described as some sort of energetic sensation in my chest and sometimes face or arms. Are these sensations an 'illusion' from neural activity strictly in the ...
3
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2answers
42 views

Are there models of single neurons on slow timescales?

From what I've come across on the web, most models of single neurons seem to focus on the "fast timescale", where electrical signals are transmitted from one neuron to another. However, neurons are ...
5
votes
1answer
64 views

Predictive Experiments on Neuroscience of Free Will

It seems to be very interesting that we can use modern neuroscience and cognitive science research to inform us about the ages-old question of free-will vs. determinism. The standard experiment was ...
6
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2answers
217 views

What is the neurobiological basis of the “inner voice” used for thought or reading?

I've recently experienced a number of hypnogogic near sleep states characterized by change in thinking (stage 1-2 sleep). I noticed that if I let go and get absorbed in the state, I can follow it. I ...
7
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1answer
255 views

Does adult neurogenesis occur only in the olfactory bulb and the hippocampus?

The scholarpedia article on this subject says: Adult neurogenesis is the process of generating new neurons which integrate into existing circuits after fetal and early postnatal development ...