Structure and Operation of the Human Brain – Week 6

This week we started studying the visual system. Naturally the lecture started with a brief recap of the anatomy of the eyes themselves. Its parts and how we percieve the world, this is, how we see; how we transform the light into images.

We have two types of receptor which allow us to percieve the world, the cones and the rods. Furthermore, we have three types of cones, one which allows us to see the “Red” light, “Green” light and “Blue” light, depending on what wavelength are they more sensible to.

Something really interesting to ponder about is that we see colors thanks to these three types of cones, so how do other species see the world?-This question has led us to the discovery that dogs and other animals don’t see colors as well as we do, because they have fewer types of cones; however, what about the opposite?  Well, there are a number of animals who have more types of cones than us humans have. For example, butterflies, who have 5 types of cones, pretty impressive, but not as much as one particular animal, the mantis shrimp, who allegedly has more than 10 types of cones, one can only wonder how such a creature percieves the world.

Afterwards we started talking about the ways these receptors activate and we were presented with some pretty interesting optical illusions like how some people percieve colors differently even when they are the same just because of the difference in the environment and lightning.

One of the optical illusions presented in the lecture.

Finally we talked about the visual cortex and how the information from the eyes travels to the brain to be processed and in which processes are associated with different areas of the brain, overall it was a very interesting lecture and presenting us with related material to make us wonder about the topics presented makes the lecture’s flow better.

The lecturers also spoke about the difference in the hemispheress and how we are “two” people. Based on evidence of people with splitted-brain patients (the hemispheres being splitted was used as a treatment of epilepsy). I found a related video, which I’ll link below:


Posted by Salvador Gutierrez Medina

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