Your Personal Brain Signature and What It Reveals About You

What neuroscientists know about you from your unique 'neural thumbprint.'

8/6/2020 8:32:00 PM

Your pattern of brain activity is unique, like a neural thumbprint, and it can help predict mental and physical health conditions. Here's how.

What neuroscientists know about you from your unique 'neural thumbprint.'

Source: Photo by Natasha Connell on UnsplashNeuroscientists have discovered that you and I display our own distinct brain signature when we’re processing information similar to our unique fingerprints that distinguish us from everyone else on the planet. At one time, neuroscientists thought brain activity was pretty much the same from one person to another. But in a landmark development, Yale University researchers found that your brain activity is different from anyone else’s, much like your handwriting signature. This unique fingerprint reflects the innate properties of how your brain is wired. Suppose you’re having a brain scan (fMRI) and you’re relaxing, doing nothing in particular and your brain is at rest. Your at-rest brain signature during a lull can predict how your brain functions during other activities.

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Mapping Your Personal Brain SignatureIn 2016, University of Oxford scientist Ido Tavor and his team obtained data for 98 healthy young adults, including scans taken while the participants performed various tasks. They analyzed the relationships between participants' resting-state brain activity and the oscillations that emerged while they were engaged in various activities such as

decision-makingand reading as well as just resting. They then tried to predict brain activity profiles for a given participant on each of the tasks using only the individual’s resting-state scan. The predictions matched the brain activity of that person more closely than any of the other participants' scans.

Read more: Psychology Today »

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