Micro Life Zone
Asked by tegan13 to Emma, Josie, Kristyn, Peter, Sarah on 26 Aug 2013.
Keywords: animal, brain, experiment, test
I’m not sure what your question is.. real human brains?
I’ve done some experiments with human brains, but without touching them (people get upset when you do that without asking). I’ve done some MRI, which detects brain activity by sticking you in a giant magnet. I’ve also done some psychophysical experiments where we were trying to see what the brain was doing by recording eye movements.
Right now I’m working with real human brain cells, but they’re not technically a brain.
Could you maybe rephrase the question?
All the time, that’s my job! Although it’s usually in live humans. I use a number of different techniques to test the brain, including magnetic stimulation, electrodes placed on the head, and brain imaging (e.g., MRI). Haven’t done much in the way of animals or brains outside of the head, I’m probably a bit squeamish for much of that!
I’m guessing you mean human brains.
Yes, I have done research where we asked people a lot of questions to try and test how their brains were working, especially to test their learning and memory abilities. I have also done research where we did brain scans on people that told us how active their brains were.
Both of these tests were to try and better understand when the early signs of Alzheimer’s disease may happen.
My research at the moment doesn’t do direct testing on the brain (I’m saving that for when I finish my PhD!), but my experiments aim to deduce brain processes using psychophysical methods – this basically means you do really controlled experiments, and look at how outcomes like eye movements to work out what is happening.
I have played with human brains though – I did a class once where they bought out a bucket of human brains and we got to hold them and poke them – kinda gross, but it was really fun!! 🙂
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