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Brain Functioning

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Read The Information relating to the areas and functioning of the human brain. Upon completion of this, describe and explain the processes and areas utilized by the human brain to restore the capability of understanding and generating speech as well as regenerating new cells after sustaining injury.

The human brain is an amazing organ that can repair itself after sustaining injury. The cerebral cortex which is responsible for thinking and planning is divided into two hemispheres the left and the right. In the left hemisphere of the brain we have the Broca's area that is responsible for the production of speech, we also have Wernicke's area that is responsible for comprehending language. Plasticity is the brains special capacity for modifying and changing itself after being injured, its shown most in young children before the age of 5. An example of plasticity is if a toddler has damage to the left hemisphere of their brain the right hemisphere will then take over the language function.

There are three methods in which the brain can repair itself: They are Collateral sprouting in which axons of healthy neurons next to damaged cells grow new branches; Substitution of function is the function of the damaged area being taken over by another area of the brain; Neurogenesis is the creation of new neurons. So far new neurons have only been found in the hippocampus which is involved in memory and the sense of smell. Researches are trying to figure out how new neurons occur so possibly it can be used to fight degenerative diseases like Alzheimer disease and Parkinson disease.

Brain grafts are used when the brain is not capable of repairing itself. They are implants of healthy tissues into damaged areas. But donors of healthy brain tissue are difficult to find. Aborted fetuses would be a good source but since the procedure is so controversial and raises ethical issues, it can't be done.

Stem cells



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