Mapping The Human Brain

  • metta

    Posts: 39118

    Mar 29, 2009 3:35 AM GMT
    So figgin' cool!


    ff_brainatlas_ss1_f.jpg

    Wired Magazine
    With $55 million, a collection of frozen human brains and robots capable of processing 192 brain slices a day, the Allen Brain Institute is attempting to do the impossible: systematically map out the expression patterns of more than 20,000 genes that make our grey matter tick.



    The science behind the techniques isn't new. Researchers have probed neurons with specific RNA bits in a revealing game of genetic hide-and-seek for 40 years. But the speed and scope with which they're tackling the problem with specially-constructed robots that automate most of the data-gathering and analysis is unprecedented. When the Atlas is finished in 2012, scientists will start untangling the whys and hows of our neural network.



    Story and more photos here
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    Mar 29, 2009 3:41 AM GMT
    Could you please point out the track that that last thought followed in that brain you show here???? LOL !!! interesting stuff here !!!
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    Mar 29, 2009 4:34 AM GMT
    It would be pretty boring if you could extract the last train of thought from a dead brain.

    Most all of them would be something like, "Oh, Shit..."
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    Mar 29, 2009 5:05 AM GMT
    I figure, as crazy as my life can get, I'll probably die in my sleep. I know I have the oddest thoughts as I go to bed so I hope I can weird somebody out one day!
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    Mar 29, 2009 10:11 AM GMT
    lol that's interesting and scary at the same time. i'm sure people have all kind of creepy bizzare weird thought right before they died
  • junknemesis

    Posts: 682

    Mar 29, 2009 10:14 AM GMT
    Fascinating information! That pic however? Made me a Vegitarian for about two hours.
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    Mar 29, 2009 10:25 AM GMT
    I want to donate my body to science when I die.... off topic yes, but the brain pic made me think... "Hey, that could be my brain!" lol
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    Mar 29, 2009 10:29 AM GMT
    The more they uncover about the brain, the more it seems we already had it figured out. I love getting the empirical scientific community on board with the transpersonal psychospiritual community.
  • Sayrnas

    Posts: 847

    Mar 29, 2009 11:51 AM GMT
    ...I wonder...If you cook that with some garlic, olive oil, and squash...would it be tasty?

    What? You were thinkin' it too. icon_eek.gif
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    Mar 29, 2009 1:46 PM GMT
    Isn't the goal to analyze the neural network, not retrieve the last thoughts of a dead brain? In any case, that brain pic made me think of a story:

    When I was a Broadcasting Major in college, one of our requirements was to produce a live "4-Minute Demonstration" before the TV cameras in our college studio. It was to teach us to employ rapid combinations of close-ups and cover-shots using 2 cameras, as a person stood behind a table demonstrating something. Those Sham-WOW commercials are still using the same shot routines we were learning over 30 years ago.

    Each student could get inventive & silly with the demo he or she created, the purpose strictly being to learn the studio technical aspects, plus we had to "star" in our own production. So one student brought in a white foam human head, a wig form, that he had hollowed out, because he was going to demonstrate "brain surgery."

    He puts the foam head on the table, and drapes it with white cloth like in an operating room, and he's dressed himself as a surgeon. The video tape begins to roll, and he uses a "scalpel" to open the cranium. As he lifts off the skull cap, a camera takes to a close-up of the contents: cauliflower & pasta that he's shaped to try to look like a brain, tinged with red tomato paste.

    Off-camera you could hear an involuntary "eeewwwww" from the studio crew. I was directing this thing from the control booth, BTW, from the marked script he'd provided me. And he's using his 4 minutes to explain how he's cutting this, and probing into that, when suddenly he totally removes a big hunk of "brain."

    "Now what do you do with the brain parts you remove during surgery?" he asked the TV audience, ad libbing from the script I had in front of me. "Well, I simply eat them!"

    And he lifts his surgical mask and shoves this cauliflower-pasta mess into his mouth and starts chewing. Several studio crew members started gagging and I lost my Floor Manager, as she dropped her headset to run outside and literally vomit in a hallway.

    Needless to say the Professor grading this exercise was not pleased, and we were all warned in future that gross was out, and demos would be more carefully screened before being taken into the studio for taping. Ah, but the memories! LMAO!!!
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    Mar 29, 2009 4:38 PM GMT
    Made me think of....Gattaca

    There is no gene for the human spirit.
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    Mar 29, 2009 6:37 PM GMT
    funny-graphs-brain.gif

    The most recent mapping of the human brain.