Brain Of Blind Person Rewires Itself To Enhance Other Four Senses

Posted: Mar 23 2017, 5:34am CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

 
Brain of Blind Person Rewires Itself to Enhance Other Four senses
This is a photo of a participant in a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner used in this study. Credit: Boston University Medical School Center for Biomedical Imaging
  • Brain 'rewires' itself to enhance other senses (hearing, taste, smell and touch) in blind people

The brains of blind people apparently rewire to allow the other four senses and memory to become dominant in their lives.

The brains of those people who are born blind rewire themselves to allow for the other senses to gain an advantage of the situation.

Thus their senses of sound, olfaction and touch as well as memory and linguistic capacity are enhanced to a multifold degree. These rewired routes are not found in those with normal eyesight. The neuroplasticity of the brain is evident here.

This phenomenon may be more common than it was thought to be so in the past. There were transformations in the occipital cortex which is that area in the brain where vision is basically dealt with.

MRI scans showed that the 12 subjects in the study who were blind had developed other neuro-pathways than the 16 people who had normal vision. The connectivity in their brains showed rewiring.

In the absence of light coming in through the retina, the brain does what it can to compensate for the lack of sight. Neuroplasticity is a very real and solid thing here and is not just a fantastic notion as it was thought to be so in the past.

The human brain is a marvel of existence. It is like a billion dollar computer. The good thing is that it is very adaptive. This adaptability has allowed human beings to survive all over the globe.

Even in those who are blind from birth and cannot see even a single ray of light, the brain adapts in the way best suited to allow the individual to make the most of the situation. This is a boon for the blind since they do not possess the most beautiful of senses – that is eyesight.

The findings of this research got published online in the journal PLOS One.

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