Archive for the ‘Neuroscience and emotions’ Category

Brain areas involved with consciousness

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Even at the very early stage of the retina, an important division arises between two parallel visual streams, the dorsal stream and the ventral stream. The dorsal stream projects to the parietal cortex, and is responsible for movements in relation to objects, many of them of a routine or reflex nature. It is also seen as an answer to the ‘where is it?’ location question. The processing of the dorsal is unconscious, and is faster than the consciousness-related processing of the ventral stream.

Neural convergence points

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Frigato identifies two areas of the cingulate brain region, the anterior cingulate and the precuneus-posterior cingulate as necessary for consciousness, while eight other areas, the medial-superior temporal lobe, the anterior and posterior insulas, the superior and inferior parietal, the inferior frontal and two motor cortices are involved at various stages in conscious processing. Frigato says that his own research concurs with the idea of points of convergence in the brain where both a perception and the memories and emotions related to that perception can be held in the same neural structure.

Anterior insula and epilepsy

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Summarises an article by Anil Ananthaswamy, New Scientist, 25 January 2014 This article looks at the effect of a particular type of epileptic seizure on the anterior insula region of the brain. There are two main types of epileptic seizure; general seizures effect the whole of the cortex; this article refers to the other main type of seizure, focal or partial seizures concentrated in small regions of the brain, which is rarer than general seizure. There is also a suggestion that the stranger effects Read more […]

Neuroscience of Attention

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Ed. George R. Mangun. Oxford University Press (2012) Summary and review of the above book INTRODUCTION:  Voluntary attention is shown to be involved with slower and more deliberative processing, as opposed to the quick reaction of involuntary attention. Voluntary attention involves the frontal brain regions dealing with both emotional/evaluative and planning/working memory processing; these are some of the areas most closely correlated to conscious experience. They are thought to influence Read more […]

Emotional influences on attention

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By Harlan M. Fichtenholtz & Kevin S. Labar, YaleUniversity and DukeUniversity. Published In:-  The Neuroscience of Attention Ed. George R. Mangun, Oxford University Press (2012) Summary and review of the above chapter INTRODUCTION:-  Attention and emotion are argued to be parallel processes interacting at many stages in the brain. Some brain regions are more involved with emotional response and others more with attentional control. Limbic regions act so as to bias sensory processing, Read more […]

Radical plasticity thesis

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The radical plasticity thesis: How the brain learns to be conscious Axel Cleeremans Frontiers of Psychology (2011) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3110832/ Summary and review of this article Cleeremans starts by discussing the thermostat and by extension other simple automated equipment, which the philosopher, David Chalmers, suggested to be capable of being conscious because they processed information. Cleeremans argues that processing of information, such as levels of Read more […]

Control of spatial attention

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Midbrain and forebrain systems for bottom-up control of spatial attention Eric Knudsen, Stanford University In:- The Neuroscience of Attention – Ed. George R. Mangun Oxford University Press (2012) Summary and review of the above chapter Spatial attention allows organisms to concentrate information processing on a limited spatial region. This concentration or control can be top-down or bottom-up. Top-down control is related to working memory and frontoparietal areas tuning sensory neurons Read more […]

Orienting to the environment

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Orienting to the environment: Separate contributions to the Dorsal and Ventral frontoparietal attention networks Carlo Sestieri, Gordon L. Shulman & Maurizio Corbetta, Washington University School of Medicine In: The Neuroscience of Attention – ed. George R. Mangun Oxford University Press (2012) Summary and review of the above chapter The brain coordinates ongoing goals and expectations with new sensory inputs. Internal neural signals are seen to modulate the perceptions that result Read more […]

Thalamic control of visual attention

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Sabine Kastner, Yuri B. Saalman, & Keith A. Schneider,  Princeton Neuroscience Institute and University of Missouri-Columbia In:- The Neuroscience of Attention  Ed. George R. Mangun Oxford University Press (2012) Summary and review of the above chapter Thalamocortical interaction is argued here to be central to understanding perception and cognition. The chapter focuses on the visual areas of the thalamus, and the ability of attention to select behaviourally relevant visual information Read more […]

The Unconscious Mind is Governed by Quantum Logic

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The unconscious mind is governed by quantum logic:  How this understanding may help research into mental disorders Independent view contributed by Melissa Telling Back in 1900 Freud, father of modern psychology, classified mental processes such as dreams: flashes of insight and parapraxis as illogical processes, echoes of the unconscious mind working through everyday consciousness, which  then struggles to make sense of the messages of the ‘illogical’ unconscious mind. Today the seeming incompatibility Read more […]