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Connectomics: a window to the mind

The human brain has 100 billion neurons, connected to each other in networks that allow us to interpret the world around us, plan for the future, and control our actions and movements. Mapping those networks, creating a wiring diagram of the brain could help scientists learn how we each become our unique selves. Understanding the […]

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When a mind goes awry

Trouble in Mind (Jenni Ogden, Scribe, $32.95, ISBN 9781922070562, July 2013) I do not think I would be alone in fearing ‘losing my mind’. Even the common expression, “are you out of your mind?” gives solid form to what may seem a merely philosophical train of thought. At any given time most people will declare […]

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Do animals have minds?

Animal Wise: the thoughts and emotions of our fellow creatures, by Virginia Morell, Black Inc. Books, 2013. Laughing rats, name-calling wild parrots, archer-fish with a sense of humour, and educated ants; the naturalist Charles Darwin would have loved this book. The philosopher Rene Descartes would equally have found it deeply troubling. Both with good reason. […]

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The stress reducing possibilities of Yogurt

What might healthy mice swimming in water-filled containers in Ireland and Canada, and you immersed at work after a routinely healthy breakfast including yogurt, have in common?  A lot, the authors of a recent study have concluded.  The studies “suggest that certain organisms (Lactobacillus bacteria) may prove to be useful therapeutic adjuncts in stress-related disorders […]

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My mind is bigger than my brain: the emerging biology of gut-brain communication

A great review just published in Nature Reviews Neuroscience reminded me of something that has continued to puzzle me off and on for many years – what are gut feelings?  In 2007 I read a fascinating book called Gut feelings: the intelligence of the unconscious by the cognitive psychologist Gerd Gigerenzer.  In it Gigerenzer looks […]

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Going lobal: what business can learn from neuroscience

Neuroscience is now telling us that we can retrain our brains.  Researchers show how they are applying this to business and career training. There is a well known phenomena that suggests that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.  That may be true or not for dogs, however the latest in neuroscience research has […]

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