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3 min leídos

The Future Of Prostheses

Ask yourself: Where's your left hand? I bet you don't need to look around to answer this. Or try this: Shut your eyes and reach down and touch your right heal. Not that hard for most of us. Proprioception is the name of this ability we have that lets us keep track of, locate, and make use of our own bodies. Proprioception works thanks to sensors in our muscles (muscle spindles), but it also depends on our sensitivity to stretching and pressure on the skin. What happens if you lose proprioception? Obvious, you won't be able to perceive or intuit the position of your limbs and your own posture.
4 min leídos

The Roots Of Consciousness: We're Of Two Minds

What would happen if your brain was split in two? In this week's Invisibilia podcast and show, host Hanna Rosin meets a woman named Karen with "alien hand syndrome." After surgery to treat her epilepsy severed the connection between the two halves of her brain, Karen's left hand took on a mind of its own, acting against her will to undress or even to slap her. Amazing, to be sure. But what may be even more amazing is that most people who have split-brain surgery don't notice anything different at all. But there's more to the story than that. In the 1960s, a young neuroscientist named Michael G
7 min leídos

Cancer Isn’t a Logic Problem

A year ago, Joe Biden launched his “cancer moonshot,” a major national push to improve the prevention, detection, and treatment of cancer, a plan that was widely recognized to be incremental. “I believe that we need an absolute national commitment to end cancer as we know it,” Biden said while he was on his tour to cancer centers at Penn and Duke University. “I’m not naïve. I didn’t think we could ‘end cancer.’ I’m not looking for a silver bullet. There is none.” Many thought the “moonshot” risked casting the solution to cancer as an engineering problem. In his op-ed in the New York Times last