Friday, September 19, 2014

Friday Freebie: What I'm Reading in Ten Minutes or Less: ADHD and Brain Connections

The Human Connectome Project
I've been reading a lot about brain development lately, partly because I'm teaching it in both of my classes, but partly because it fascinates me. The fact that technology has reached the point where we can examine working, living brains non-invasively and create maps of them that de-mystify their inner workings has such amazing (and, according to my students, scary) potential. Not only can we create stunning images of what's going on inside our heads, but through research like the BRAIN Initiative and the Human Connectome Project, we're learning how the brain communicates within and outside of itself. Researchers hope that this information will put us closer to understanding and treating diseases like Alzheimer's, depression and autism.

Earlier this week, some of those stunning images, along with an article from NPR about some research breakthroughs in ADHD, landed in my inbox. Immediately friends and former students ran through my head as I considered how this new information could impact them, particularly as I read about treatment implications.
For those who want to dig deeper, the article links to a research abstract that's a decidedly more challenging read, along with a brief podcast about the study. To hear President Obama talk about the BRAIN Initiative, click here.

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