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Adult Courses

Sackler Brain Bench One-day University: Illuminating the Brain

October 18, 2014

Functional MRI

In this functional MRI image, the brain is engaged in a decision-making task. The areas shaded yellow to red represent the highest brain activity and the areas shaded blue to green, the lowest brain activity. Taken during a neurosurgical procedure, the three white lines slightly above the brain represent three individual neurons whose activity was recorded during the procedure. 


Your brain contains a web of billions of neurons, linked together through more connections than there are stars in our galaxy. How does this complex network enable us to talk, feel, and breathe? How do scientists use imaging technologies to unravel this vast complexity, and what promises do future technologies hold? Modern brain research and treatment have flourished through the use of high-resolution temporal and spatial neuroimaging methods. These informative and often beautiful images hold clues to the elusive inner workings of the brain on the anatomical, cellular, electrical and genetic levels. Participants will come away with a deeper understanding of the methodologies used by neuroscientists and neurologists to visualize how our brains function, and sometimes break down. The field of neuroscience has experienced dramatic advances in imaging technologies over the past 20 years; join us for a day of deciphering these images and illuminating the brain.

Guest experts include:
- Susan Gauthier, Associate Professor of Clinical Neuroscience / Clinical Neurology, Weill-Cornell Medical College. 
- Linda A. Heier, Professor of Clinical Radiology, Weill Cornell Medical College.
- Soha Ashrafi, Postdoctoral Fellow, Neuroscience Institute, New York University. 
- Carl Schoonover, Axel Laboratory, Columbia University. 

This course was organized in collaboration with New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center. 

American Museum of Natural History

Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024-5192
Phone: 212-769-5100

Open daily from 10 am - 5:45 pm
except on Thanksgiving and Christmas
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