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Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology

Where Science Meets Society

Alumnus funds graduate students researching brain tissue cultures

Scott Fisher believes learning how to solve a problem can be as valuable as solving one.

This belief is what drove him to create a fund that will support IGB research in the area of regenerative biology and tissue engineering.

The fund will aid the research needs of graduate students working in this area of study – specifically those who are developing technologies to culture brain tissue to learn about brain cancer, traumatic brain injuries and neurological disorders.

Theory: Flexibility is at the heart of human intelligence

Centuries of study have yielded many theories about how the brain gives rise to human intelligence. Some neuroscientists think intelligence springs from a single region or neural network. Others argue that metabolism or the efficiency with which brain cells make use of essential resources are key.

A new theory, published in the journal Trends in Cognitive Sciences, makes the case that the brain’s dynamic properties – how it is wired but also how that wiring shifts in response to changing intellectual demands – are the best predictors of intelligence in the human brain.

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