Navigation Links
How the brain routes traffic for maximum alertness
Date:1/12/2012

A new UC Davis study shows how the brain reconfigures its connections to minimize distractions and take best advantage of our knowledge of situations.

"In order to behave efficiently, you want to process relevant sensory information as fast as possible, but relevance is determined by your current situation," said Joy Geng, assistant professor of psychology at the UC Davis Center for Mind and Brain.

For example, a flashing road sign alerts us to traffic merging ahead; or a startled animal might cue you to look out for a hidden predator.

When concentrating on a specific task, it's helpful to reconfigure brain networks so that task-relevant information is processed most efficiently and external distractions are reduced, Geng found.

Geng and co-author Nicholas DiQuattro, a graduate student in psychology, used functional magnetic resonance imaging to study brain activity in volunteers carrying out a simple test. They compared their results to mathematical models to infer connectivity between different areas of the brain. The study appeared in the Dec. 7 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.

The subjects had to look for a letter "T" in a box and indicate which way it faced by pressing a button. They were also presented with a "distractor": another letter T in a box, but rotated 90 degrees.

The distractor was either similar in appearance to the target, or brightened to be more attention-getting.

Subjects did better in trials with an "attention-getting" distractor than a less obvious one, and lit up specific areas of the brain accordingly.

The new work shows that the brain doesn't always "ramp up" to deal with the situation at hand, Geng said. Instead, it changes how traffic moves through the existing hard-wired network -- rather like changing water flow through a network of pipes or information flow over a computer network -- in order to maximize efficiency.


'/>"/>
Contact: Andy Fell
ahfell@ucdavis.edu
530-752-4533
University of California - Davis
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1

Related medicine news :

1. Selectively stopping glutathione sensitizes brain tumors to chemotherapy
2. Could Internet Addiction Disrupt Brains Connections?
3. Alcohol Targets Brain Reward Centers in Heavy Drinkers
4. In the brain, ORMOSIL nanoparticles hold promise as a potential vehicle for drug delivery
5. MIT: How does our brain know what is a face and whats not?
6. Personalized gene therapies may increase survival in brain cancer patients
7. Paranoid or Placid? Scans Show Pots Effect on Brain
8. Novel brain tumor vaccine acts like bloodhound to locate cancer cells
9. MRI Scans Show Brain Changes in Kids With Schizophrenia
10. Songbird brain synapses and glial cells capable of synthesizing estrogen
11. NJIT receives patent today for new shunt to aid brain-injured patients
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/7/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 , ... Sharon Kleyne, ... Global Climate Change and Your Health on Voice of America, declared on her radio ... call attention to the fact that when these bullies attack leaders in corporate America, ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Texas Premier Locksmith , a leading ... unethical locksmith companies and is urging Search Engines to improve verification methods in ... Locksmith, these fraudulent locksmith services take advantage of consumers locked out of houses, ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 , ... ... the 2016 BOC Business Brilliance Awards under the Best New Product Launch category. ... results achieved through user experience. , BOC Global Events & Training Group is ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... “Tomorrow Trump Goes To Washington”: a brief ... the presidency and to America. “Tomorrow Trump Goes To Washington” is the creation of ... can for this country. , Nancy attributes her patriotic nature to her WWII veteran ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... The Business ... Summit in Reston, VA on March 21-22, 2017. This premier event features business ... experiences from a cross-section of industries such as financial services, insurance, healthcare, manufacturing, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/7/2016)... December 7, 2016 According to ... titled , Global Market Study on Multiplex Detection Immunoassay: North ... , the global multiplex detection immunoassay market is expected to witness ... ... ,      (Logo: ...
(Date:12/6/2016)... 6, 2016  Alopexx Oncology, LLC announced data from ... fusion protein (immunocytokine) composed of interleukin-2 and a CD20-targeting ... on B cells as Rituxan and maintains the activities ... also involved in tumor targeting, engagement of the immune ... results of the study (abstract #95954) were presented at ...
(Date:12/6/2016)... 6, 2016 Homozygous Familial Hypercholesterolemia ... Summary Global Markets Direct,s latest Pharmaceutical ... Hypercholesterolemia (HoFH) – Pipeline Review, H2 2016, ... Hypercholesterolemia (HoFH) (Metabolic Disorders) pipeline landscape. ... which is caused due to mutation from ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: