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Authors: D. F. Swaab

We Are Our Brains

BOOK: We Are Our Brains
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Copyright © 2014 by D. F. Swaab

All rights reserved.

Published in the United States by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of Random House, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company, New York.

S
PIEGEL
& G
RAU
and the H
OUSE
colophon are registered trademarks of Random House LLC.

The publisher gratefully acknowledges the support of the Dutch Foundation for Literature.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Swaab, D. F. (Dick Frans)

We are our brains: a neurobiography of the brain, from the womb to Alzheimer's / D. F. Swaab ; translated by Jane Hedley-Prôle.

pages cm

ISBN 978-0-8129-9296-0

eBook ISBN 978-0-679-64437-8

1. Brain. 2. Brain—Research. 3. Neurosciences. I. Title.

QP376.S858 2014

612.8′2—dc23 2013020412

www.spiegelandgrau.com

Jacket design: Thomas Ng

Jacket image (silhouette of child): © Cut Arts, Inc.

v3.1

Contents

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

EPIGRAPH

PREFACE

INTRODUCTION

   We Are Our Brains

   Metaphors for the Brain

Illustrations

  
1.
The brain seen from the side, with the parts of the cerebral cortex labeled.

  
2.
Cross section of the brain.

  
3.
Starting the birth process.

  
4.
An anencephalic newborn.

  
5.
The localization of oxytocin and vasopressin in the brain.

  
6.
A synapse as seen under an electron microscope.

  
7.
Brain scans of two three-year-old children, one who was brought up normally and one who was severely neglected.

  
8.
Broca's area and Wernicke's area.

  
9.
A child born in Amsterdam's Wilhelmina Gasthuis hospital during the famine of 1944–1945.

10.
The bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BSTc), a region of the brain important for sexual behavior.

11.
Comparing the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis in men, women, and transsexuals.

12.
Postcard received after the author published the first findings of a difference between the brains of homosexual and heterosexual men, in 1989.

13.
Another item of correspondence received after the author published the first findings of the difference between the brains of homosexual and heterosexual men.

14.
Cartoon by Peter van Straaten after the publication of the first findings of the difference between the brains of homosexual and heterosexual men (1989).

15.
The prefrontal cortex (PFC) as seen from the side.

16.
The dopaminergic reward system.

17.
Psychogenic erections and the passage of erotic impulses.

18.
The human hypothalamus.

19.
Narcolepsy.

20.
The cerebral cortex, the thalamus, and the white matter.

21.
The brain seen from below.

22.
Some specialized cortical areas.

23.
A depth electrode in the subthalamic nucleus of the brain of a Parkinson's patient.

24.
Effect of Parkinson's disease on the motor area.

25.
The basal nuclei and acetylcholine.

26.
The route taken by information on its way to long-term memory.

27.
Some brain systems involved in emotions.

28.
The angular gyrus.

29.
The two types of lesions associated with Alzheimer's.

30.
Brain shrinkage in frontotemporal dementia.

31.
A patient in the final stage of Alzheimer's.

32.
Atrophy of the cerebral cortex in Alzheimer's.

33.
Atrophied neurons in the nucleus basalis of Meynert.

34.
Slices of tissue from the brain of a patient with Alzheimer's.

35.
Rembrandt,
Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Deijman.

BOOK: We Are Our Brains
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