brains

This Is Why We Have Brains In Our Heads And Not Our Bums

Video: This video explains why our brains are at the end of our bodies in our heads. Evolutionary advantage led to sensory organs clustered together around animals’ eating ends and early brains developed. Only later did animals start to protect these assets with skulls and then develop other advantages such as jaws.


Scientists Have Located The Brain's On/Off Switch For Consciousness

Every one of us loses consciousness on a daily basis: it’s called sleep. But scientists have never understood which part of the brain controls when you’re conscious and when you’re not. Now, researchers seem to have found it by coincidence while studying an epileptic patient — and used electronic brain stimulation to flip the switch on and off.


What The Synapses In Your Brain Actually Look Like

Without synapses, your neurons wouldn’t be able to communicate and your brain would be little more than a ball of meat. Exactly what synapses look like has been a mystery until now, and it turns out that even though their job is simple, they’re complicated as hell.


Scientists Cured Paralysis In Mice With Stem Cells And Lasers

This is wild. Chasing the elusive dream of curing paralysis, a team of scientists used stem cells and optogenetics to circumvent the central motor system of lab mice whose nerves had been cut. This enabled them to blast individual motor neurons with a laser, triggering movement in the legs of the mice.


Looking At Orange Light Is Like Drinking A Cup Of Coffee

Light is an incredibly powerful force. Sure, it helps us see and gives us fast internet, but medical researchers keep stumbling upon new positive side effects. A team of Belgian scientists, for instance, just discovered how a 10-minute blast of orange light increases brain activity related to cognition and alertness.


Scientists Unlock Mystery Of Out-Of-Body Experiences

Some people claim that they have experienced out-of-body experiences — aka “astral trips” — floating outside of their bodies and watching themselves from the outside. A team of scientists found someone who says she can do this at will and put her into a brain scanner. What they discovered was surprisingly strange.


Scientists Find Striking Similarities Between Human And Dog Brains

It’s funny watching dogs do human things. It’s funny to watch them drive cars. It’s funny to watch them sit in chairs. But, seriously, new research shows that dogs actually are just like us. At least they are when it comes to processing voices and emotion — and, now, we have the brain scans to prove it.


How Does Your Memory Work?

Badly, perhaps. But even if you struggle to recall information on a daily basis, all our brains are wired in much the same way — and it requires quite a few steps to remember anything at all.


Scientists Turn Off Pain Using Nothing But Light

Pain is a hard problem. Sure, we can throw a little morphine at pain in the short term, but researchers continue to struggle with solutions for chronic pain. New research from Stanford’s futuristic Bio-X lab looks like a light at the end of the tunnel — literally!


Why You Should Never Listen To Ride Of The Valkyries While Driving

Time is a slippery continuum. Watching the hands on a clock tick will feel way, way different depending on the situation; trying to frantically write something on deadline with five minutes to spare ain’t the same as desperately willing a conference call to finish more quickly. It turns out that music can have an equally brain-bending effect on how we process the days of our lives.