Celebrity selfies help us see how memories are formed in the brain


In the science fiction movie Inception, Leonardo Di Caprio and his gang set out to implant specific memories into individuals’ brains in order to pull off the perfect crime. But in the real world of science implanting memories is actually quite easy — the challenge is tracking the brain cells involved in the process. Our research has now started to unveil some of the basic mechanisms of how new memories are encoded in the brain, simply using selfies to implant the memories.

Obstacles to reading the mind

For centuries, philosopher Rene Descartes inspired other thinkers with his famous thesis that mind and body are two separate entities. Today, however, most neuroscientists hold a “materialistic” view of the mind in relationship to the brain: the “mind” is the activity of neurons, as electricity is the movement of electrons or temperature the kinetic energy of molecules. Read more…

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