Biologists and doctors have made great progress in studying the body, which has helped to find ways to fight many diseases. But if we talk about the brain, it turns out that so far we haven't been able to get much data about it. The brain is still a mystery, and its research only puzzles scientists with new and new questions.
The brain is often compared to a powerful computer. The capacity of the neural network is equal to 5.5 bat item. The scale is simply amazing: to view films at this volume, it will take three centuries without a break for food, sleep, and toilet. The brain processes up to 1015 bits of information per second (the human body sends 11 million bits per second to the brain for processing). And this is even though a person can consciously perceive no more than 50 bits. Accordingly, like a computer, the brain requires some kind of software.
Part of it is laid during the formation of the fetus. These "programs" include basic skills: breathing, serving physiological needs, and so on. The rest we get in the process of life.
And here lies the first and greatest mystery of the human brain. It is not "sharpened" for a specific model. A child can grow up and, so to speak, "not a person". One of the first experiments in this direction in the XVI century was conducted by the Indian ruler Akbar. He isolated a group of toddlers from the rest of the world. It is not specified how they were fed and how the "box" was cleaned, only the results are stated: after six years, the children not only did not learn to speak but also did not start walking. The lack of information that encourages development has left toddlers at the level of infants.
An equally telling example is the "Mowgli" children. History knows many cases when the baby was "raised" by animals. They share a common characteristic: neither mentally nor behaviorally children have become people. They copied exactly the habits and habits of their foster parents. People in this respect are radically different from all creatures on Earth. A deer raised by, say, tigers (this is just a hypothesis!) it won't become a predator. And a human-fed bird will still fly someday. Only humans can adopt characteristics from a completely different species.
Before it's too late
Another mystery of the brain: long and discrete training. Basic "programs" are assimilated by the age of three – 80% of the brain is already ready for Autonomous existence. But the other 20 he gets up to 20 years. In the future, the "software" is only updated. And the older a person is, the more difficult it is to upgrade. If the child is not given intensive communication in the first 3 years, then he already learns the basic skills with great effort, and in most cases, he does not master them.
Comparing with the animal world, it is easy to see that animals and birds get all the skills before they grow up, compared to humans-very quickly. However, they are not able to develop new ones later. Unless under the pressure of people, but this will not be knowledge, but training.
Even more adaptable scientists are interested in the phenomenon of the human brain, called plasticity. It consists of intercepting the functions of the affected areas of the brain by those that remain intact. Sometimes this ability takes on a shocking scale. One such example is the bacteriologist Louis Pasteur. At the age of 46, he suffered a stroke that rendered his right hemisphere inoperable. Nevertheless, the scientist lived to 73 years. And all his ingenious developments (in particular, the rabies vaccination) are made by one half of the brain.
A legend of international surgery was a patient who had one hemisphere removed for medical reasons. It was predicted that he would go blind, lose the ability to speak, and in the worst case, lose the ability to think coherently. Nevertheless, half a month after the operation, the man spoke and saw as well as before, and continued to work.
Another case, which occurred in 1948, struck the entire medical world. Roadmaster gedge was badly injured as a result of his partner's carelessness. His head was pierced by an iron rod with a diameter of 3 cm. the Stick entered the left cheek and came out in the area of the crown.
For an hour, the Builder was, to put it mildly, insane, and then, with the help of members of the team, he got to the hospital, vividly discussing the hole that had formed in his head. I had to be treated only for an infection that got into the wound. Gedge lived for another 12 years after the accident, although the left hemisphere was almost destroyed, and the right one was severely damaged. Interestingly, the master's mental and mental abilities were all right after the injury. Only the character has deteriorated.
Doctors and scientists are upset by one subtlety: such plasticity is not shown at all and often in insufficient volume. Why someone comes to the rescue, and someone does not, the researchers could not find out. The mechanism of "substitution" also remains a secret for the time being.
The more scientists study the human body, the more they tend to believe that nature (or higher forces) created it close to perfection. Research, observations, and experiments confirm the idea that the development of medicine, in principle, is not necessary – if you find a way to "turn on" the mechanism of self-regeneration inherent in the brain.
And it is available, and, judging by indirect data, very powerful. Remember at least the placebo effect: if a person is firmly convinced that the "vitamin" given to him is the latest medicine, he may well be cured even of an advanced form of the disease. You can also send auto-training to the piggy Bank of such facts. Persistent self-persuasion and character hardens, and is an effective sedative, and eliminates psychosomatic diseases.
Hypnosis opens up even more prospects. As you know, if a "prepared" person is told that a red-hot rod will be applied to his hand and does not do this, then a real burn will appear on the skin, after which a scar will remain for life. Researchers are confident that the opposite effect is possible. However, it is easier to destroy than to build, and the necessary procedures have not yet been developed.
If doctors would just like to use such brain abilities, then scientists are interested in how the brain treats: what commands it sends and where, what substances are synthesized according to its instructions, where the "bricks" for them come from. And most importantly, how to make the brain work in the right direction. Unfortunately, there is no practical or even theoretical progress in this direction yet…
What scientists are sure of is that our brain is not working at full capacity. The organ is barely 10% involved. Why – there are two versions. According to the first, a kind of safety valve is triggered. It protects the brain from overload. It is possible that a larger volume of processed and assimilated information can cause the internal computer to burn out. However, then there is a counter-question: why was the ten-fold power reserve initially laid down? Nature doesn't create anything purposeless. And to protect against "overheating", it is enough to leave "in reserve" half, not 90% of the volume.
If you listen to the second hypothesis, and even more interesting picture emerges. Some scientists believe that the brain works with normal efficiency. In other words, only as many resources are involved as the surrounding conditions require. It becomes interesting: for what circumstances were a person created if the vast majority of his brain is in sleep mode all his life?
Currently, thanks to science, we have medicines that activate the work of our brains. The most popular tablets are Adderall, Ritalin, Modafinil, and others.
People with non-standard abilities stand out a little. Even the most fanatical materialist will not deny the existence of such, even though the General public knows only about individuals. Scientists believe that "special" talents appeared in those who are called psychics, due to the activation of a larger part of the brain than in ordinary people. And this poses another challenge for researchers-to to understand how and what exactly brought these brain sectors into a state of functioning.
Something interesting about the brain
The main difficulties in studying such a delicate part of our body are that it is impossible to separate it or apply "heavy" methods of study. However, despite everything, scientists still manage to get some information about the brain. For example, as it turned out, a fifth of all the energy received by the body goes to feed the brain. And this although it occupies a maximum of 2% of the body weight. Translated into numbers, that's 25 watts when you're not sleeping. Another mystery: in General, it seems a lot, but there is still not enough energy to supply such a complex system.
Another interesting fact: in a pregnant woman, almost from the moment of fertilization of the egg, the number of impulses jumps to a quarter of a million per minute – 2-2. 5 times. Why-it is unclear. Either the brain works for two people (the mother and the unborn child), or it establishes new connections and functions. If the first assumption is true, then the intensity of work should increase gradually, as the fetus forms and develops. If the second is true, then the number of pulses should gradually decrease: when the system is running smoothly, these costs are unnecessary. Nevertheless, the intensity remains at the same level for all 9 months. The answer to this phenomenon has yet to be found.
Researchers are also haunted by dreams. At all times, it was believed that a night's sleep is necessary for the brain to rest. However, as it turned out, the brain continues to work during sleep. And in the second phase-almost more active than during wakefulness. When does the rest? When the same question was asked about the heart. Then everyone was satisfied with the assumption that the heart has enough breaks between beats-short but frequent. The brain, it turns out, works around the clock, and seven days a week. And how he does it, again, is not entirely clear.