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If you see a student dozing in the library or a co-worker catching 40 winks in her cubicle, don’t roll your eyes. New research from the University of California, Berkeley, shows that an hour’s nap can dramatically boost and restore your brain power. Indeed, the findings suggest that a biphasic sleep schedule not only refreshes the mind, but can make you smarter. Students who napped (green column) did markedly better in memorizing tests than their no-nap counterparts. (Courtesy of Matthew Walker) Conversely, the more hours we spend awake, the more sluggish our minds become, according to the findings.
SELF REFLECTION: Bodily illusions teach neuroscientists about the sense of self. Image: crimfants, flickr.com Where are you right now? Maybe you are at home, the office or a coffee shop—but such responses provide only a partial answer to the question at hand. Asked another way, what is the location of your "self" as you read this sentence? Like most people, you probably have a strong sense that your conscious self is housed within your physical body, regardless of your surroundings.
But 30 years after the commercials debuted, neuroscientist Read Montague was still thinking about them. Something didn't make sense. If people preferred the taste of Pepsi, the drink should have dominated the market. It didn't.
To trace the longer pathways that interconnect different brain regions, CBS labs developed a genetic method to label each individual nerve cell a different color to identify and track axons and dendrites over long distances. With light microscopy, scientists image the branching patterns and connections of all the axons within a region of the nervous system in transgenic mice that express a number of different fluorescent proteins in individual neurons. The idea here is to color-code the individual “wires” and “nodes.” The images below give an indication of the power of this approach.
Neuroscience of free will refers to recent neuroscientific investigation of questions concerning free will . It is a topic of philosophy and science . One question is whether, and in what sense, rational agents exercise control over their actions or decisions. As it has become possible to study the living brain , researchers have begun to watch decision making processes at work. Findings could carry implications for moral responsibility in general. Moreover, some research shows that if findings seem to challenge people's belief in the idea of free will itself then this can affect their sense of agency (e.g. sense of control in their life). [ 1 ] [ 2 ]