Study from the Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences and Berkeley provides clues to the neural basis of consciousness
Neuroscientists from the Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and from the University of California, Berkeley led a brain experiment which found that a patient’s consciousness of perception of something that is new might reside in the occipitotemporal area of the visual cortex, in the back of the brain.
This finding might help future better understanding of the “unilateral neglect syndrome” that can occur after a stroke in one of brain’s sides. In that case, the person will not perceive objects or events on the side of the brain that is damaged, but, paradoxically, still be conscious and eventually react to them. This puzzling condition affects a quarter of people who suffer a stroke.
“What is required for something not only to be sensed by the brain, but for you to have a subjective experience? Understanding that would eventually help us understand what is missing in the cognitive system and in the brains of patients who have this kind of a syndrome.” said senior author Leon Deouell, Hebrew University professor of psychology and member of the Edmond and Lily Safra Center for brain research.
This finding was published this month in the journal Cell Reports.
Several media round the world reported on this breakthrough.