21 October 2012

Scientists read dreams

This article from Nature, "Scientists read dreams" on October 19, 2012 by Mo Costandi, reports on some findings of brain scans performed just prior to waking dreaming subjects.  Basically the researchers linked activity in various visual processing areas to the reported dream content of the dreamers.  The basic finding comes down to this:
The findings, presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in New Orleans, Louisiana, earlier this week, suggest that dreaming and visual perception share similar neural representations in the higher order visual areas of the brain.
I think this is interesting as a confirmation of how at least some part of dreaming operates in the brain, but as lead researcher Yukiyasu Kamitani of the ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories in Kyoto, Japan says,“Knowing more about the content of dreams and how it relates to brain activity may help us to understand the function of dreaming.” Maybe!

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