26 April 2007

Shedding light on the brain

Scientists at MIT and Stanford have developed a powerful tool to analyze brain function. Using lab animals genetically engineered so that their neural circuits can easily be switched on and off with simple light pulses, researchers will be able to discover "which circuits do what" more easily and precisely than earlier methods allowed. By extrapolating the knowledge thus gained to the human brain, it may be possible to develop improved treatments for conditions like epilepsy and Parkinson's disease -- and of course the work will help us make progress in the field of brain-machine interfacing in general.

Found via Samizdata.

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