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Scientists uncovered Human Brain's ability to Pay Attention



Updated On - Monday, 26 August 2013

31 July 3013

Researchers from Dartmouth’s Geisel School of Medicine and the University of California Davis have uncovered the cellular mechanisms behind human brain’s ability to pay attention to relevant information while ignoring distractions.

Despite much study of attention in the brain, the cellular mechanisms responsible for the effects of attention have remained a mystery until now, researchers said.

Researchers studied communications between synaptically connected neurons under conditions where subjects shifted their attention toward or away from visual stimuli that activated the recorded neurons.

In this study, scientist found a new mechanism by which attention shapes perception by selectively altering presynaptic weights to highlight sensory features among all the noisy sensory input. This study would help people with attention deficits resulting from brain injury or disease, possibly leading to improved screening and new treatments.

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