Wiring the brain

This week’s topic was partly familiar from the course Cognitive neuroscience. Cognitive neuroscience should have been the following course after this course so it was really beneficial to understand more about the basic structures and phenomena in wiring the brain. The neuron cell development was a completely new topic to me. I have always thought that neurogenesis and plasticity of the brain are extremely interesting phenomena in the brain. It is intriguing that after an injury or deformation, the brain can learn to function so that people cannot tell the difference between those people and people with a “regular” brain. It was interesting to learn the background cause for why children learn faster than adults.

The part of the chapter where the development of neurons was described raised one question for me. As I have read from nutritional sources that the brain nervous system develops from the nervous system of the gut. How do neuroscientists see the effect of this? As it has been argued that it could be one of the reasons why nutrition seems to impact the mood and mental wellbeing and vice versa. Also, as the book discussed about the mystery of autism, just yesterday I read from a nutritional book that autism is one of the diseases where the gut-brain connection seems to impact quite heavily.

One another thing I was thinking that how far can the brains benefit from plasticity? In another words, which features impact on that. For example after having cerebral hemorrhages people seem to recover in very differing levels. Why can’t the brain use plasticity in those cases and learn to function without the damaged parts? Is it related to the amount of damaged neurons and parts of the brain?

-Erika

Posted by Erika Ojanperä

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