Affective Neuroscience, Blog, Brain research, Cognitive Neuroscience, EEG research, Emotional Brain, Sleep research

Dreaming: A peculiar form of cognitive activity

Dreams are a complex phenomenon that most people experience during sleep. They are characterized by a series of thoughts, images, and emotions that are felt and recalled sometimes with high vividness. Such activity is associated with the so-called rapid eye movement (REM) sleep phase, which entails a separate phase from the no-REM (NREM) sleep cycle. Brainwave activity linked to REM sleep resembles that of the waking brain making it hard to distinguish between them. Recently, new research has found for the first time a novel brain pattern that allows predicting when someone is dreaming and even the content of dreams. In this post, you will get to know better what is going on in the brain when you dream and the purpose of dreaming.

Continue reading “Dreaming: A peculiar form of cognitive activity”
Blog, Brain research, Cognitive Neuroscience, Cognitive Psychology, EEG research, Emotional Brain

Binaural Beats as Brain Enhancers: is there any Scientific Proof?

Maybe you have heard of binaural beats, a soundwave stimulus that has spread across the internet for having positive effects on mood and cognition. Binaural beats are auditory illusions that occur when presenting two tones with a slight frequency mismatch to each ear separately. Some evidence support that such acoustic stimulation can train the brain signals, altering both, specific brainwaves and connectivity patterns. Other evidence indicates just placebo effects suggesting no better benefits than monoaural beat stimuli. Today, the assumed exceptional effects of binaural beats on human emotion and cognition remain still unclear. Regardless of such discrepancies, what is the scientific evidence of its claimed effects on the human brain?

Continue reading “Binaural Beats as Brain Enhancers: is there any Scientific Proof?”
Blog, Brain research, Cognitive Neuroscience, EEG research, Neurostimulation, Neurotechnology

Neurotechnology: where we are and where we are going?

brain-hack

Today,  advance “brain-reading” technology makes increasingly possible to access an individual’s mental activiy. Although it may sound a bit scary, the reality is that scientists from different  fields are already working with sophisticated technologies to “decipher” the bases human thoughts in real-time. Control a computer, move an artificial arm, or obtain knowledge of individuals´ mood and thoughts are just few examples of the advances of neurotechnology. Very recently last summer, Tesla founder Elon Musk, presented to the big public an implantable brain device capable of reading users’ minds. 

One interesting question is why “mind-reading” technology could be necessary for our lives? Leaving aside ethical issues, should we worry if modern neurotechnology can figure out what we are thinking? Continue reading “Neurotechnology: where we are and where we are going?”

Affective Neuroscience, Blog, Brain research, EEG research, Emotional Brain, Emotional development, Infants research

Exploring the brain correlates of emotions in babies

One of the most interesting topics in the field of emotional development research relates to infants´ capacity to express and experience different emotional states. A general question refers to when emotions first emerge in humans life.  Approach and withdrawal are two important concepts in the definition of human´s emotions. Both constructs have not typically been viewed as features of infant emotional behavior until late in the first year. However, when looking directly into infants´ brain, researchers have found a different story suggesting that infants experience positive and negative emotions from birth but in a very basic way and not as adults do.

Infants´ emotions are not equivalent to adults emotions

Continue reading “Exploring the brain correlates of emotions in babies”