New brain map could improve AI algorithms for machine vision

#artificialintelligence

Despite years of research, the brain still contains broad areas of unchartered territory. A team of scientists, led by neuroscientists from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and University of Sydney, recently found new evidence revising the traditional view of the primate brain's visual system organization using data from marmosets. This remapping of the brain could serve as a future reference for understanding how the highly complex visual system works, and potentially influence the design of artificial neural networks for machine vision. In the quest of the whole-brain connectivity in marmosets, the team found that parts of the primate visual system may work differently than previously thought. Mapping out how distinct types of cells connect can help researchers understand how groups of cells play in concert to relay and process sensory information from the outside environment to the brain.


New brain map could improve AI algorithms for machine vision

#artificialintelligence

IMAGE: By analyzing digital images of marmoset brains injected with neuronal tracers (indicated by the arrows), Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory researchers discovered that the primate's visual system worked differently than previously... view more Despite years of research, the brain still contains broad areas of unchartered territory. A team of scientists, led by neuroscientists from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and University of Sydney, recently found new evidence revising the traditional view of the primate brain's visual system organization using data from marmosets. This remapping of the brain could serve as a future reference for understanding how the highly complex visual system works, and potentially influence the design of artificial neural networks for machine vision. In the quest of the whole-brain connectivity in marmosets, the team found that parts of the primate visual system may work differently than previously thought. Mapping out how distinct types of cells connect can help researchers understand how groups of cells play in concert to relay and process sensory information from the outside environment to the brain.



Top-Down Executive Control Drives Reticular-Thalamic Inhibition and Relays Cortical Information in a Large-Scale Neurocognitive Model

AAAI Conferences

The thalamus is a critical brain structure involved in gating and regulating the flow of sensory and cortical information. The reticular nucleus of the thalamus (TRN) sends inhibitory projections to the thalamic relay nuclei instead of projecting to the cortex as the other thalamic nuclei do. These inhibitory projections endow the TRN with the functionality to modulate and control cortical information flowing through the thalamus. Yet, the functional roles of the TRN and thalamus in high-level cognitive processing, such as spatial reasoning and decision-making, remains poorly understood. Neurocognitive models offer a framework to explore the high-level cognitive functions of the thalamus and TRN. Here, we investigate the functional roles of the thalamus and TRN in high-level cognitive tasks using a large-scale neurocognitive model called ICArUS-MINDS. Our results demonstrate distributed and parallel top-down executive control of semantic and spatial cortical information. Specifically, we observed reticular-thalamic inhibitory gating of spatial and semantic information through top-down task switching control during reasoning, decision making and recall. Thalamic-gating was critical for orchestrating processing sequences of task-dependent switches between cortical sources and targets. These results are an important first step in simulating and understanding the functional roles and behaviors of the thalamic brain system in high-level cognitive processing.


Learning to read rewires the brain in just six months

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Learning to read and wires rewires the brain in just six months, according to new research. A study of women in India who learned to read in their 30s has shown the human brain's incredible capacity to reorganise and transform itself, researchers said. Researchers recruited women in India, a country with an illiteracy rate of around 39 per cent, to see what they could learn about the areas of the brain devoted to reading. Learning to read and wires rewires the brain in just six months, according to new research. Pictured is an artist's impression of the brain Researchers studying Indian women learning to read for the first time in their 30s found looking at books can prompt the brain to reorganise itself.