Big Mammalian Brain Recipes


Big Mammalian Brain Recipes

Sage Labs 4101

September 26, 2007 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Mark Changizi
Assistant Professor
Department of Cognitive Science
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Abstract: The mammalian brain varies in mass over about five orders of magnitude, and large brains do not at first glance look much like scaled-up small brains. Larger brains are more highly convoluted, are overflowing with white-matter volume, have more synapses per neuron, and have a greater number of specialized cortical areas on the surface. One might wonder whether there are some fundamental properties of the mammalian brain that ARE being kept invariant, and that perhaps these changing properties mentioned above are a consequence of selection pressure to maintain the invariants. I will describe evidence for two such fundamental invariants that shape the mammalian brain.


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