How do we perceive the human brain
Last Updated: Monday, February 15, 2010, 00:00

London: A scientist has charted how over the past four centuries humans have regarded the brain.

Sarah de Rijcke, who will receive her doctorate Thursday at the University of Groningen in Holland, studied numerous documents from all over Europe and the US such as illustrations, manuals, atlases, articles, lab reports, diary fragments, manuals of image technology, lab setups and scan technology.

Nowadays, we consider knowledge objective if it has been created with the best equipment, supported by statistics, and without too much human contribution, de Rijcke has established.

Current brain scans appear to be the apex of objective registration of both neuro-anatomy and brain function.

The aids and technologies used over the course of the centuries, from the microscope to colouring techniques, photography and contemporary PET and CT scanners, have strongly influenced how we regard the brain, says a Groningen release.

"In 50 years time we may well scoff at the enormous scanners we use today. Perhaps you won`t have to lie in a scanner at all. By that time we`ll probably have a completely different view of objectivity as well," says de Rijcke.


First Published: Monday, February 15, 2010, 00:00

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