As we’ve reported before, neuroscience has been making strides at tremendous pace in recent years. Here are 5 TED talks that highlight some important steps for the future of your brain health.
You can grow new brain cells. Here’s how
Can we, as adults, grow new neurons? We covered this concept, known as neurogenesis, in a recent blog. In this talk, Neuroscientist Sandrine Thuret says that we can, and she offers research and practical advice on how we can help our brains better perform neurogenesis - improving mood, increasing memory formation and preventing the decline associated with aging along the way.
The brain may be able to repair itself – with help
Through treating everything from strokes to car accident traumas, neurosurgeon Jocelyne Bloch knows the brain's inability to repair itself all too well. But now, she suggests, she and her colleagues may have found the key to neural repair: Doublecortin-positive cells. Similar to stem cells, they are extremely adaptable and, when extracted from a brain, cultured and then re-injected in a lesioned area of the same brain, they can help repair and rebuild it. "With a little help," Bloch says, "the brain may be able to help itself."
Neuroscientist Michael Merzenich looks at one of the secrets of the brain's incredible power: its ability to actively re-wire itself. He's researching ways to harness the brain's plasticity to enhance our skills and recover lost function.
The brain uses a quarter of the body's entire energy supply, yet only accounts for about two percent of the body's mass. So how does this unique organ receive and, perhaps more importantly, rid itself of vital nutrients? New research suggests it has to do with sleep.
How can we begin to understand the way the brain works? The same way we begin to understand a city: by making a map. In this visually stunning talk, Allan Jones shows how his team is mapping which genes are turned on in each tiny region, and how it all connects up. With these news insights, it could be possible for researchers to start unlocking some of the human brain’s deepest secrets.
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