Home > Uncategorized > Brain wiring a no-brainer?

Brain wiring a no-brainer?

Curvature in this DSI image of a whole human brain turns out to be folding of 2D sheets of parallel neuronal fibers that cross paths at right angles. This picture came from the new Connectom scanner.

According to a NIH study:

The brain appears to be wired more like the checkerboard streets of New York City than the curvy lanes of Columbia, Md., suggests a new brain imaging study. The most detailed images, to date, reveal a pervasive 3D grid structure with no diagonals, say scientists funded by the National Institutes of Health.

I.e. No tangles! The human brain’s connections turn out to be a an orderly 3D grid structure with no diagonals. 2D sheets of parallel fibers cross at right angles — ” like the warp and weft of a fabric.” The first pictures from the most powerful brain scanner of its kind reveal an “astonishingly simple architecture.”

As the brain gets wired up in early development, its connections form along perpendicular pathways, running horizontally, vertically and transversely. This grid structure appears to guide connectivity like lane markers on a highway, which would limit options for growing nerve fibers to change direction during development. If they can turn in just four directions: left, right, up or down, this may enforce a more efficient, orderly way for the fibers to find their proper connections — and for the structure to adapt through evolution, suggest the researchers.

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