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A new tool for brain research
Date:8/1/2013

brain was the same each time. This natural variability in the brain response was also reflected by the EEG activity and the researchers suggest that this signal might help the brain make the transition from processing stimuli back to their internal thoughts in different ways.

Dr Karen Mullinger from The University of Nottingham's Sir Peter Mansfield Magnetic Resonance Centre said: "This work opens a new window of time in the fMRI signal in which we can look at what the brain is doing. It may also open up new research avenues in exploring the function of the healthy brain and the study of neurological diseases."

Dr Stephen Mayhew from Birmingham University Imaging Centre said "We do not know what the exact role of the post-stimulus activity is or why this response is not always consistent when the stimulus input to the brain is the same. We have already secured funding through the Birmingham-Nottingham Strategic Collaboration Fund to continue this research into further understanding of human brain function using combinations of neuroimaging methods."

Director of the Sir Peter Mansfield Magnetic Resonance Centre, Professor Peter Morris, said: "Functional magnetic resonance imaging is the main tool available to cognitive neuroscientists for the investigation of human brain function. The demonstration in this paper, that the secondary fMRI response (the post-stimulus undershoot) is not simply a passive blood flow response, but is directly related to synchronous neural activity, as measured with EEG, heralds an exciting new chapter in our understanding of the workings of the human mind."


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Contact: Emma Rayner
emma.rayner@nottingham.ac.uk
44-011-595-15793
University of Nottingham
Source:Eurekalert

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