PS101 Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Thalamus, Head Injury, Lobotomy
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Michael Matthews October 4, 2011
A large amount of people develop some form of dementia by the time they are 90. However it has also been
found that some of these traits can be hereditary, especially Alzheimer’s.
Monozygotic rate is 50% while dizygotic is 30%
When looking in the mind of an Alzheimer’s patient, you find plaque as well as tangled brain pieces, along
with a shrunken cortex.
Estrogen and vitamin E have been found to help avoid Alzheimer’s.
People have shown a lot of great recovery from brain damage such as strokes.
Gage had a nail shoot through his pre frontal cortex, back to work, but seemed like a different person. (pre
frontal lobotomy) He managed to perform it perfectly.
Psychotherapy is dealing with an intact brain. (also called DBS- Deep brain stimulation)
You do psychotherapy by going through the temporal cortex, the eyes, or a needle strait from the top with a
heated end (thalamus)
Head trauma can lead to memory problems, along with permanent brain damage. (concussions)
Stroke is one of the biggest killers in Canada. Obstructive blood flow that when burst, kills neurons.
The brains plasticity, very remarkable in fixing itself.
Unused pieces of the brain can transform to conduct different functions.
Very controversial in the three ways the brain repairs itself. Collateral sprouting (healthy neurons brains out
to unhealthy ones, to compensate for the lost neurons). Substitution function (compensate for lost abilities).
Neurogenesis (the possibility to grow new neurons). most controversial
We can however create new dendrites every day (dendritic growth). One dent rite might be connected to
over 200,000 neurons. Things you can do: puzzles, soduko, playing an instrument, repair something, try the
arts, Dance, spent time with provocative)
“As soon as people seize to study, they forget”