Einstein's Left And Right Brain Had A Stronger Connection Than Most People's
Oct 04, 2013 03:52 PM EDT
Albert Einstein's brain was exceptional, and now researchers may have found out why.
A research team determined the left and right hemispheres of the notorious genius' brain were "unusually well connected to each other," a Florida State University press release reported.
"This study, more than any other to date, really gets at the 'inside' of Einstein's brain," Florida State University evolutionary anthropologist Dean Falk, said. "It provides new information that helps make sense of what is known about the surface of Einstein's brain."
Lead author Weiwei Men of East China Normal University's Department of Physics created a new technique that detailed Einstein' s corpus callosum for the first time. The region holds the brain's largest bundle of fibers that are responsible for communication between the two hemispheres of the brain.
"This technique should be of interest to other researchers who study the brain's all-important internal connectivity," Falk said.
The revolutionary technique "measures and color-codes the varying thicknesses of subdivisions of the corpus callosum along its length, where nerves cross from one side of the brain to the other," the press release reported.
By measuring the thickness, the researchers could tell the number of nerves that crossed and connected the left and right hemispheres of the brain. They could also tell which areas of the brain were more connected to each other; different areas would "facilitate different functions." The researchers said an example of this is that the "movement of the hands is represented toward the front and mental arithmetic along the back."
The team compared Einstein's brain measurements 15 elderly modern men's brains and with 52 men from Einstein's era in the early 1900's.
The researchers found Einstein had "more extensive connections between certain parts of his cerebral hemispheres compared to both younger and older control groups."
The genius published four articles that helped shaped modern science during his "miracle year" when he was 26.