E5 (HL) The Human Brain

Check out the excellent resources from the NewScientist: The Human Brain

PBS has a great site called The Secret Life of the Brain (with 3D animation), and there’s Slate’s special issue on The Brain. Here’s a nice podcast from the Guardian, too.

Class presentation:

Essential Biology E5: The Human Brain

Regions of the brain:

PBS: 3D brain animation

If you have an iPod Touch, iPhone or iPad, get this cool free app: 3dBrain.

Try this out as a class or review activity: using showercaps to teach neuroanatomy.

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Evidence for functions of brain structures

Reader on brain technologies, from Nature

PhET Lab: Simplified MRI shows you how MRI works (allow Java to run)

How does fMRI work? Video from 60 minutes:

Investigating Broca’s area:

Ferrier’s animal experiments reader (from 1881)

Guardian article: Your Lying Brain – the quest for perfect lie detector.

The strange past and promising future for the lobotomy, from Wired Science

Although fMRI is a great tool, there is the danger of believing too much of the hype. Ben Goldacre explains that some brain imaging studies report more positive findings then their numbers can support.

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Sympathetic vs Parasympathetic control

Simple animation from GFisk

Heart rate control animation, from McGraw Hill

Put some ACh into it, music video:

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Pupillary Reflex

Pathways of the pupil reflex animation from Utah Medicine

How to test the pupil response:

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Perception of Pain

Pain pathways animation, from Bay Area Pain Medical

Pain is in the brain:

Effect of endorphins on pain, from Wadsworth Psychology

The Mystery of Chronic Pain:

Do fish feel pain? Reader from Science Daily

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Optogenetics: Shedding Light on Brain Regions.

This is a great video, and Ed Yong has a really good post on optogenetics at his site.

TED Talk: Aditi Shankardass on A Second Opinion on Learning Disorders

With an estimated 1 in 6 children suffering from a developmental disorder, Aditi Shankardass asks if we can afford to ignore brain imaging and diagnostic technology when making decisions about brain-related difficulties. Another great short talk from TED, which links to the use of technology in determining brain function.

TOK link: how might the use of brain scanning technology represent a potential paradigm shift in diagnosis? Where we have relied on symptomatic diagnosis in the past, could the use of new neuroscience give a new way of knowing that replaces what we already know?

Now protect that brain that you’ve been cramming full of knowledge!

Can dead salmon recognise human emotions?

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Finally:

This is a funny story from Wired.com. Read the experimental protocol in the image here, then click on it to read about the results. Ooh, the dangers of false-positives!

And Carl Zimmer has a great piece on the teenage brain at Discover Magazine.

A similar piece at Wall Street Journal.

And a lot of teen brain resources at PBS Frontline, including a full documentary.

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Key terms: brain, regions, broca,

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  1. Love your videos and songs!

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