Neuroscience

Scans show learning 'sculpts' the brain's connections

Spontaneous brain activity formerly thought to be "white noise" measurably changes after a person learns a new task, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the University of Chieti, Italy, ...

Neuroscience

Virtual treasure hunt shows brain maps time sequence of memories

People have little difficulty remembering the chronology of events, determining how much time passed between two events, and which one occurred first. Apparently, memories of events in the brain are linked when they occur ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Imagine: Our attitudes can change solely by the power of imagination

Sometimes in life there are special places that seem to stand out to us—a school playground, perhaps an old church, or that inconspicuous street corner where you were kissed for the first time. Before the kiss you had never ...

Neuroscience

Measurement of thoughts during knowledge acquisition

In a recent learning study, researchers were able to show that new conceptual information is stored along spatial dimensions in the form of a mental map located in the hippocampus. Together with colleagues from the Donders ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

MDMA makes people cooperative, but not gullible

New research from King's College London has found that MDMA, the main ingredient in ecstasy, causes people to cooperate better—but only with trustworthy people. In the first study to look in detail at how MDMA impacts cooperative ...

Neuroscience

Functional MRI reveals memory in sleeping toddlers

Our ability to remember past events develops rapidly in the first couple of years of life, but it's not clear exactly how this happens. Researchers at the Center for Mind and Brain at the University of California, Davis have ...

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Magnetic resonance imaging

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), or nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (NMRI), is primarily a medical imaging technique most commonly used in radiology to visualize the internal structure and function of the body. MRI provides much greater contrast between the different soft tissues of the body than computed tomography (CT) does, making it especially useful in neurological (brain), musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, and oncological (cancer) imaging. Unlike CT, it uses no ionizing radiation, but uses a powerful magnetic field to align the nuclear magnetization of (usually) hydrogen atoms in water in the body. Radio frequency (RF) fields are used to systematically alter the alignment of this magnetization, causing the hydrogen nuclei to produce a rotating magnetic field detectable by the scanner. This signal can be manipulated by additional magnetic fields to build up enough information to construct an image of the body.:36

Magnetic Resonance Imaging is a relatively new technology. The first MR image was published in 1973 and the first cross-sectional image of a living mouse was published in January 1974. The first studies performed on humans were published in 1977. By comparison, the first human X-ray image was taken in 1895.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging was developed from knowledge gained in the study of nuclear magnetic resonance. In its early years the technique was referred to as nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (NMRI). However, as the word nuclear was associated in the public mind with ionizing radiation exposure it is generally now referred to simply as MRI. Scientists still use the term NMRI when discussing non-medical devices operating on the same principles. The term Magnetic Resonance Tomography (MRT) is also sometimes used.

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