Why our brain uses up more energy than that of any other animal

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Magnetic resonance imaging scans showing healthy healthy brains


Magnetic resonance imaging scans showing healthy human brains

SIMON FRASER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

The human brain has greater energy demands than that of any other animal, especially in certain important regions, which may have been key to the evolution of our complex cognition. Knowing how energy use differs across the brain could also help us better understand and treat certain conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease and depression.

Some mammals have bigger brains and more nerve cells, or neurons, than humans, making it unclear how we evolved a uniquely advanced ability to think critically …



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