Is this brain parasite truly manipulating your behavior? + Brain edits when you blink

#1
Is the brain parasite Toxoplasma manipulating your behavior or is your immune system to blame?
https://theconversation.com/is-the-brain...ame-116718

EXCERPT: . . . Toxoplasma gondii parasites, which sexually reproduce only in cats but can infect any animal, hijack the brain and affect the host’s behavior. In a turn of events that would make Charles Darwin smile, rats and mice infected with Toxoplasma behave in ways that make them easy prey for cats – exactly where Toxoplasma wants to go.

The ability of Toxoplasma to disrupt such basic instincts in rodents is alarming when you consider that one-third of humans also carry this parasite’s cysts in their brain. Latent toxoplasmosis in humans has been associated with serious neurological disorders, including schizophrenia, intermittent explosive (rage) disorder and suicide, but has never been shown to be a direct cause.

Could the parasite be manipulating people as well? Is there a way we can get rid of this parasite and, if so, would behavior return to normal?

I am a microbiologist who has been studying Toxoplasma for over 20 years. Not only have I found the parasite’s effects on its host to be endlessly fascinating, I have been trying to identify its vulnerabilities so physicians can better treat this currently incurable lifelong infection.

In a collaboration with biochemist Ronald Wek and neuroscientist Stephen L. Boehm II, we have made the surprising discovery that the parasites may not be directly manipulating its rodent host. Rather, the host’s immune response to the chronic infection may be to blame. (MORE)



Your Brain Stops Time When You Blink
https://digest.bps.org.uk/2019/05/14/you...you-blink/

EXCERPT: You spend about 10 per cent of your waking hours with your eyes shut, simply because of blinking. Every few seconds, each time you blink, your retinas are deprived of visual input for a period lasting anywhere between tens to hundreds of milliseconds (500 milliseconds is equivalent to half a second). You don’t usually notice this, because your brain suppresses the dark spells and stitches together the bursts of visual information seamlessly. But these dips in visual processing in the brain do have an impact: a new study in "Psychological Science" finds that, in an important way, they cause your sense of the passing of time to stop temporarily.

[...] The study raises all kinds of fascinating questions for future research to investigate. Right now, I’m sitting at my desk, focusing on my computer screen — relying heavily on vision. Yes, I’m absorbed in what I’m doing. But is one reason why time seems to go more quickly when I’m working because my blinks are affecting my judgements of time passing, but when I’m outside, hanging out with my kids, other types of sensory input are preventing or counteracting the time-compressing blink-effect? (MORE)
Reply


Possibly Related Threads…
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  Disproving 25-yr old belief about brain + Earliest ape walked upright in Germany C C 0 38 Nov 6, 2019 11:47 PM
Last Post: C C
  Antisocial teens & brain connection issue + Doubts that curiosity motivates learning C C 2 128 Jun 1, 2019 06:14 PM
Last Post: Syne
  The Human Brain Has been Getting Smaller Since the Stone Age C C 0 128 Apr 9, 2019 05:43 AM
Last Post: C C
  Male & female brain differences – Must we keep doing this? (neurosci op-ed) C C 11 896 Nov 19, 2018 02:15 AM
Last Post: Secular Sanity
  Human Brain Evolved to Believe in Gods C C 31 2,607 Oct 18, 2018 11:09 PM
Last Post: Zinjanthropos
  'Time-travel illusion' tricks brain into seeing something that isn't really there C C 0 120 Oct 10, 2018 02:47 AM
Last Post: C C
  BO sensitivity predicts politics + Human bats + Brain cells before death C C 1 266 Feb 28, 2018 06:22 AM
Last Post: Syne
  David Eagleman: The mystery of Stephen Paddock's brain C C 54 2,637 Oct 22, 2017 11:29 PM
Last Post: Syne
  When you split the brain, do you split the person? + Humans emerged 300,000 years ago C C 0 182 Oct 1, 2017 03:56 AM
Last Post: C C
  Extroverts more exhausted than introverts + Some myths about brain just won't go away C C 2 382 Sep 21, 2017 01:12 AM
Last Post: Syne



Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)