After providing all the funding for The Brain from Top to Bottom for over 10 years, the CIHR Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction informed us that because of budget cuts, they were going to be forced to stop sponsoring us as of March 31st, 2013.

We have approached a number of organizations, all of which have recognized the value of our work. But we have not managed to find the funding we need. We must therefore ask our readers for donations so that we can continue updating and adding new content to The Brain from Top to Bottom web site and blog.

Please, rest assured that we are doing our utmost to continue our mission of providing the general public with the best possible information about the brain and neuroscience in the original spirit of the Internet: the desire to share information free of charge and with no adverstising.

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Bruno Dubuc, Patrick Robert, Denis Paquet, and Al Daigen




Monday, 18 June 2012
Memories: Always a Work in Progress

faux-souvenirsPeople tend to think that their memories are reliable and bear no resemblance to the false ones invented by people who suffer from confabulatory hypermnesia (severe false memory syndrome). But experiments using morally complex scenarios, such as those developed by psychologist Jonathan Haidt, have shown that normal subjects are surprisingly quick to invent explanations to justify intuitive moral stances, such as accepting the taboo against incest.

Such explanations are somewhat reminiscent of those offered by split-brain patients whose left-hemisphere provides language-based justifications for their behaviour to make it seem to make sense.

A related but more generalizd phenomenon is memory reconsolidation: the process whereby, every time you remember something, the neural substrate of this memory is “recalibrated” on the basis of the current situation and thus, from one reconstruction to the next, can become fairly different from the actual stimulus that originally created it.

i_lien Confabulatory hypermnesia, or severe false memory syndrome
i_rec Jonathan Haidt’s Home Page
i_rec “I read Playboy for the articles”

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