“We know very little about the brain”: Experts outline challenges in neuroscience

The greatest challenge in the field of neuroscience, according to two experts, is that we still don’t understand the basics. Around forty students, scientists, and community members recently gathered for the Stanford Chinese Family and Faculty Club’s quarterly speaker series kickoff to learn more. Neurobiologist Lu Chen, PhD, began by providing a general overview of the anatomy of the nervous system. Though we’ve made advances in neuroscience with improved imaging tools there’s still a lot to learn, she said. “We know very little about the brain. We know about connections, but we don’t know how information is processed,” she said. Learning, for example, doesn’t just require good memory, but also depends on speed, creativity, attention, focus, and, most importantly, flexibility. Understanding exactly how the neural pathways function could lead to improved treatments for depression,…


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