Introducing the brain: our brain is so different (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Tuesday, May 12, 2020, 00:28 (53 days ago) @ David Turell

It isn't just bigger. It is better:

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352154616302327

"Highlights

"Human specialization in brain organization and function is apparent at several levels of organization.

"Although humans have comparably large brains, brain size alone does not fully explain the cognitive faculties of our species.

"Evolutionary changes may include addition of novel parietal areas that perform fine-grained visuospatial information processing.

"Reorganization of the human brain is also apparent at the level of microstructure, such as distribution and morphology of neurons and glial cells.

"Human brain evolution is characterized by increase in expression of genes involved in energy metabolism, synaptic function, and plasticity.

"Abstract
Although we share evolutionary history with other primates, examples of apparent cognitive and behavioral discontinuity between humans and other species abound. Neuroanatomical and molecular differences that distinguish the human brain are evident at several levels of organization. Changes in overall anatomy include an increase in absolute and relative brain size. In addition, there may be novel parietal lobe areas in humans that are involved in processing of evermore fine-grained visuospatial information. Modifications in microstructure, such as the distribution patterns and morphology of neurons and glial cells are also significant. Finally, changes in expression of both mRNA and proteins reflect increased energy consumption and plasticity. All together, these brain specializations, when coupled with cultural forces, shaped the evolution of human cognition." (my bold)

Comment: our current is very different in kind from previous brains


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