Flashcards in Book: Soft-wired Michael Merzenich Deck (26)
By the time we are in their 80’s more than half of us have what problems that require serious medical treatment?
Neurological or psychiatric
Contemporary neuroscience shows us you come from.... and your brain is ....
What is one very striking distinction that distinguish Homo sapiens from other large brain mammals?
Our capacity for behavioural adaption
What are just about the least ‘plastic’ of the change-control processes in the brain?
The brains processes that account for setting up bincocular (two-eye) vision
Following an injury what does your brain do in how it represents your skin surfaces?
It rapidly and dramatically revises the way that it represents your skin surfaces
Following an injury the regenerated nerve inputs try to do what? in the old neurological territory?
They try to reclaim, and over time the healed nerve will reclaim much (but never all) of its previous brain territory
What does skill acquisitions or performance improvement at any skills or ability show scientists?
All brain change
Researchers have found that plastic remodelling is a near universal proponent of the mammalian what?
What is operate conditioning?
The progressive improvement of voluntary responding as we acquire or refine skills and abilities
The brain organises itself on the basis of the concurrent arrival of what? In small moments of what?
Information in small moments of time
What compelling evidence has Merzenich and his team gathered to show the three key areas that can predict controlled adult cortical plasticity?
1. Selective attention
2. Our memory
3. Our powers of prediction
Is plasticity isolated to any single brain system level?
On the contrary, as we acquire new skills, this remodels entire brain systems and networks
When do our brains begin to change plastically and are first bombarded by information received by our senses?
In the 7th month in uterio
At birth what is the brain like?
It is very noisy, very disorganised, very imprecise, very slow in operations, and very very unreliable
What makes brain areas mature first?
Brain areas that receive high-quality information from our senses
As you age the progressive maturation of those successive stages contributing to our progressively more powerful cognitive competencies occur where?
In the cerebral cortex - brain structure responsible for most of our remembering, reasoning, predicting, action planning, and thinking
Cerebral cortex responsible for what?
brain structure responsible for most of our
When is the brain machinery setup for humans?
in the Critical Period (CPs)
A time of riotous brain change
During the early stages of human life when the plasticity switch is always “on” is the plasticity in CPs regulated or unregulated?
Unregulated - everything the baby sees or hears drives plastic hangers- everything drives brain change
When we sense a sound, a feeling, a sign or smell our eyes and skills Sean or ears/nose does what to engage the brain?
Translates it into patterns of electrical impulses that engage the brain
The electrical impulse patters travel on what to the brain? And are then done what in the brain?
On incredibly thin ‘transmission wires” (axons)
And are conveyed in the brain from one brain cell to another
What does the brain’s ability to be selective do for us?
A brain’s ability to be selective (and thereby pay attention to just this while it ignore all of that)
in its neurological response to what it sees or hears of feels in the world
can control and focus its learning to master skill after skill
After the end of the CP (in early childhood) does the brain control its own development/plasticity?
Yes, it no longer absorbs everything it hears, sees, and feels.
This is a good thing. Otherwise certain experiences would be inappropriately over represented in the brain.
The ‘ON’ switch to plasticity is turned on by what 4 circumstances?
1. When you pay careful attention, or focus on a task or goal
2. When you (your brain) are (is) rewarded or punished- or expecting either
3. When your brain positively evaluates your performance in a goal-directed behaviour
4. When your brain is surprised by, or potentially threatened by- something new or unexpected
What do modulators neurotransmitters do in the brain?
They are chemicals they brain releases that turn the “ON” switch on for neuroplasticity.
Examples include dopamine, noradrenaline, acetylcholine spritzing