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Stories from inside the scanner

The Atlantic ran a fun piece today spotlighting six interesting ways people have undergone an MRI scan. I'll leave most of it for you to enjoy and just flag my favorite - "While reading T.S. Eliot." Writer Brian Fung explains:

When actors assume a role, it's often as if they've flipped a switch and become a completely different person. What does that switching action look like in the brain? To find out, British researchers had a female actor alternately recite lines from T.S. Eliot's poem, "The Waste Land," and count sequences of numbers. When the actor was counting, her brain activity looked like any normal person's. But when she switched into character, a part of her brain called the infraparietal sulcus lit up. That's the part that handles spatial memory.

"I think actors' brains are like musicians' brains," she said, "in that they've been trained to learn enormous sections of language - not by rote, but by matters of association."

Previously: Using MRI technology to visualize cognitive activity and compose a soundtrack of a resting brain
Photo by Muffet

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