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Can't remember the names of the cranial nerves? Here is a handy-dandy mnemonic for you: O n O ld O lympus T owering T op A F amous V ocal G erman V iewed S ome H ops. The bold letters stand for: olfactory, optic, oculomotor, trochlear, trigeminal, abducens, facial, vestibulocochlear, glossopharyngeal, vagus, spinal accessory, hypoglossal. Still can't remember the cranial nerves?
Francis Crick The Salk Institute and Christof Koch Computation and Neural Systems Program California Institute of Technology
What's the scale of things here? The following lengths (from Posner p. 305) give approximate sizes for structures in the nervous system: 0.001 mm: synapses (tip of a connection between neurons) 0.1 mm: neurons (brain cell) 1 mm: local circuits (small networks of cells) 10 mm: maps (spatially organized topographic maps) 100 mm: systems (e.g., the visual system) 1000 mm: the central nervous system (including spinal cord) How many things are we talking about? Short answer: a LOT. Long answer: Per cubic millimeter (mm^3), there are about 10^5 neurons and 10^9 synapses.
Love Deactivates Brain Areas For Fear, Planning, Critical Social Assessment Andreas Bartels and Semir Zeki of the Wellcome Department of Imaging Neuroscience, University College London have found using Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) that love turns down activity in some areas of the brain in part so that we will not see flaws in the object of our affections. However the key result was that it's not just that certain shared areas of the brain are reliably activated in both romantic and maternal love, but also particular locations are deactivated and it's the deactivation which is perhaps most revealing about love. Among other areas, parts of the pre-frontal cortex – a bit of the brain towards the front and implicated in social judgment – seems to get switched off when we are in love and when we love our children, as do areas linked with the experience of negative emotions such as aggression and fear as well as planning.
By Andrew Newburg | Yawn. Go ahead: Laugh if you want (though you’ll benefit your brain more if you smile), but in my professional opinion, yawning is one of the best-kept secrets in neuroscience. Even my colleagues who are researching meditation, relaxation, and stress reduction at other universities have overlooked this powerful neural-enhancing tool.
The central nervous system (CNS) consists of the brain and the spinal cord, immersed in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Weighing about 3 pounds (1.4 kilograms), the brain consists of three main structures: the cerebrum, the cerebellum and the brainstem. Cerebrum - divided into two hemispheres (left and right), each consists of four lobes (frontal, parietal, occipital and temporal). The outer layer of the brain is known as the cerebral cortex or the ‘grey matter’. It covers the nuclei deep within the cerebral hemisphere e.g. the basal ganglia; the structure called the thalamus, and the ‘white matter’, which consists mostly of myelinated axons. – closely packed neuron cell bodies form the grey matter of the brain.
This area of the Brain Explorer provides information on the workings of the brain, including the mechanism and control of neurotransmitters and neurotransmission. An in-depth understanding of the chemical composition and complex workings of the human brain will enable us to unravel the pathology behind brain disorders and will drive the development of new therapies and treatments for what can be severely debilitating illnesses. In order to keep the content of the Brain Explorer as accurate as possible, the Lundbeck Institute actively encourages your feedback and would like to receive any comments you may have on the current content as well as suggestions for content which could be included in the future.
Neurotransmitter Molecules Neurotransmitters can be broadly split into two groups – the ‘classical’, small molecule neurotransmitters and the relatively larger neuropeptide neurotransmitters. Within the category of small molecule neurotransmitters, the biogenic amines (dopamine, noradrenaline, serotonin and histamine) are often referred to as a discrete group because of their similarity in terms of their chemical properties. Click on the links in the table above to read more about some of the important neurotransmitters. Serotonin
In an astonishing new study, scientists at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), have imaged human and monkey brains and found… well, the image above says it all. It turns out that the pathways in your brain — the connections between neurons — are almost perfectly grid-like. It’s rather weird: If you’ve ever seen a computer ribbon cable — a flat, 2D ribbon of wires stuck together, such as an IDE hard drive cable — the brain is basically just a huge collection of these ribbons, traveling parallel or perpendicular to each other. There are almost zero diagonals, nor single neurons that stray from the neuronal highways. The human brain is just one big grid of neurons — a lot like the streets of Manhattan, minus Broadway, and then projected into three dimensions.