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A breathtaking journey into the two-pound, slimy, spongy mass of the human brain




(iStock illustration)

What weighs three pounds and is much more than a slimy, spongy mass? The human brain, of course. It is the most complex organ in the body – it houses 86 billion neurons that act like a wondrous supercomputer that allows our bodies to function and our minds to move freely.

But how much do you really know about your own brain? If you're curious about the brain, a visit to BrainFacts.org (19459012) may be okay.

The site – a public initiative of the Kavli Foundation, the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and the Society for Neuroscience – is a database of all things brain. It is published by neuroscientists who provide a wealth of information about the human organ, from anatomy to its place in society.

The site contains articles, videos, and interactive features that make brain learning fun. It is suitable for educators and students, but you do not have to be in school to immerse yourself.

Leverage the site's 3D brain function, an interactive model that allows you to explore the brain structures and learn more about their functions. You can click on different structures or use a drop-down menu that shows different parts and explains their functions. (You can understand this article because of Wernicke's range.) The temporal lobe structure allows people to understand the spoken and written language.)

There are informative articles on brain behavior, disorders and diseases and research different ways to approach the sometimes confusing organ. In the "Ask an Expert" section of the website, readers can post questions on brain and neuroscience and read expert answers on topics such as how much energy the brain consumes, and whether migraine and seizures are related to it. Many articles contain reference lists so you can immerse yourself in science.

Videos are another way to engage with the topic. A series on "Meet the Researcher" introduces neuroscientists and their work.

The site also features a newsletter, various social media presences (Instagram account by BrainFacts offers amazingly pretty brain images) and "finding a neuroscientist". Function that connects educators and organizers with brain researchers.


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