Neurophilosophy

Archives for June, 2008

Psychology Today blog network

The bi-monthly American magazine Psychology Today has launched a network of blogs covering a wide variety of topics, including addiction, cognitive science, sports psychology and psychotherapy.  The network contains more than 80 blogs, many of which are written by researchers who are prominent in their respective fields. I haven’t had a look at all of…

Synapse proteomics & brain evolution

When it comes to human brain evolution, it is often said that size matters. The human cerebral cortex is much larger than that of other primates, and therefore its expansion must have been a vital feature of human evolution. Researchers have therefore emphasized the importance of encephalization, the process by which brain mass increased dramatically…

DARPA’s neuro-optical binoculars

Several years ago, the mad scientists at DARPA (the research and development wing of the Pentagon) conceived of a pair of binoculars that would enhance soldiers’ ability to detect enemies. Danger Room informs us that DARPA has just awarded the giant defence contractor Northrop Grumman a $7.6 million contract to develop the device. Here’s a…

Neuroscience on JoVE

The Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE) is a pioneering open access online journal devoted to the publication of peer-reviewed biological research in video format. The JoVE website was launched in December 2006, and now has about 200 films, which are divided into 7 categories, and which describe all sorts of experimental procedures. The neuroscience category…

World’s oldest woman had a healthy brain

  A group of Dutch researchers report that a 115-year-old who remained mentally alert throughout her whole life had a healthy brain that showed no signs of Alzheimer’s Disease or other forms of dementia. den Dunnen et al had the unique opportunity to evaluate the woman’s performance on psychological tests just a few years before…

Uncle Prozac wants you

This week’s issue of Time has a cover story called America’s Medicated Army, about the increasing use of antidepressant and anti-anxiety drugs among U.S. troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. The article quotes figures from a recent report by the Army’s Mental Health Advisory Team, according to which, 12% of troops in Iraq, and 18%…

Encephalon 47 online now

At Channel N, Sandra has compiled a fantastic 47th edition of Encephalon. There are, as usual, many blog posts about a wide variety of topics neuroscience and psychology. This edition also includes no less than 7 film clips, including one which contains footage of Albert Bandura’s classic ‘Bobo Doll experiment’, in which the effect on…

Morbid anatomy of the human brain

Plate XIII: Encysted tumour of the brain, from Robert Hooper’s Morbid Anatomy of the Human Brain (1828). 14 more plates from the book, and many other wonderful vintage illustrations, can be viewed at Images from the Past. (Via where else but the excellent – and now 1-year-old – Morbid Anatomy?) 

Neuroscience, like all other branches of science, is fraught with dogmatic ideas about its subject matter. A number of principles have emerged, principles that have been regarded as fundamental to our understanding of brain function.  But the human brain is an organ of bewildering complexity – it is often referred to as the most complex…

Evolving the mind

Below is a video of a recent talk given by Carl Zimmer about the evolution of the mind, at the Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, NYC.