6To What Extent Is the Brain Understood?
Our brains are the last frontier of the life sciences. Research is being conducted from various perspectives to answer the ultimate questions about our consciousness and ourselves. Research on the cerebral cortex is especially in focus. Being 2–3 mm below the surface of the cerebrum, the cerebral cortex carries out our mental functions. But stimulation occurs in completely different areas when we see, hear, and speak.
In this chapter, we will discuss about the discovery that brain functions are allocated in the structure of the brain. We will then survey the following topics: nerve-cell stimulation mechanisms, memory, various brain function measurements that have been made using the latest instruments, the relationship between genes and behavior as discovered with molecular biological techniques, and dementia. The brain is receiving special attention today because all aspects of human beings are controlled by the brain. Understanding brain functions is thus the shortest path to understanding humans.