Cajal Blue Brain Project

Imagine a day in which simply by pressing a key can reshape your brain, increase the efficiency of certain areas, improve memory... If you are a lover of film you will remember to Johnny Mnemonic, the protagonist of the film of the same name, which had a cerebral microchip which expands its memory. By Koncha pines-Pey for space MIMIND.


In the field of neuroscience today there is increasingly more available programs that facilitate learning, improve executive functions of the brain and reconexionan our networks. Are we merging Sci-Fi with everyday life? The film, from Frankenstein up to Dolhouse, they have suggested to us that some of these technologies might someday be possible, always based on what we know about the brain. But we now know the brain is light-years from what we knew 20 years ago.

Memory works like a video camera, we stock all the details that we collect and when we want to use the memories reproduced them on the screen of the mind? If this idea is correct, then it seems reasonable to to one day be able to transfer memories from one head to another, just as we do with any file. We can also access anything that has happened to us in detail, and also to the memory of the others...

Fortunately, research in biological systems have shown that our memories do not function as video cameras Not at all. Our brains are identified with more new and important things that we see, and it is stored in different areas of the brain, the rest is discarded. Even a great moment of our life - the birth of a child, the first kiss...-is not stored as one piece. It separates the vertical lines of the horizontal, and store them separately.

While view the memories completely can be a remote possibility, delete, and alter memories already is a reality, at least in laboratory animals. By blocking the brain's ability to create proteins, the scientists have demonstrated that they could prevent the formation of memories and erase existing memories.

The reason why the memory can be erased so easily is that whenever we remember something, this is rewritten. Anything that interferes with the time of rewriting is also recorded with the memory. The memories are weakens when it recovers them.

Another paradigm that has been revised in recent years has been the plasticity of the brain in adulthood. Until little believed that neurons died and were not recovered. The Cajal Blue Brain Project He managed to create an initial supercomputer that could imitate a brain with 10,000 neurons. The objective of the project, founded in May 2005 by the Mind & Life Institute and l´Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, in Switzerland, was the creation of a virtual brain as a supercomputer. The difference, however, between built as the initial brain and natural brain was enormous. Trent -scientific - stressed that the brain contains approximately 100,000 billion neurons, each making a synaptic connection with other 7,000 neurons. So the brain is continuously learningwhich is constantly updated and reconexiona each other.

Software + hardware

This decision of conscience has been frankly demonstrated, according to Trent, on the theory of neuroplasticity "continuous learning". As well, the funding and the research of the Blue Brain Project continues - participants this Spain-.

As science fiction has always inspired the science, I hope that we continue with the brain experiments and discoveries allow to eliminate the suffering of our minds.

We will finally have human with artificial brains or will be able to upload our brains to the computer? Will we be able to make our data transfer after death? Now I remember rightly that the Tibetan lamas spoke in the Tibetan Book of life and death.

A small detail that complicate life scientists is that neurons our brain combines the conduct of the activity and the content of the same, the neurons are both software and hardware. Can the Cajal Blue Project to compete with the human brain? How can all this influence in a clinical setting - in mental illness - and education? And in personal relationships? It can be spectacular. But the imagination of our brain will not fail to inspire us in the exploration of new areas to develop new hypotheses... Of one thing we can be sure: our brains never fail to surprise us.

To be continued (continued...)


Other articles on
By • Oct 4, 2013 • section: General