Malleable brain

Our brain is a strange thing. It still has a lot of secrets for us, but step by step it we are trying to unravel it. This post is about how the brain of a sighted person works vs the brain of a blind person, which show that our brain is malleable.

When sighted people see an outline or silhouette of a person, areas of the cerebral cortex become active. (the cerebral cortex is specialized in making sense of visual stimuli ) The extrastriate body area, seems particularly interested in people: It responds more strongly to images of the human body than to other types of objects.

According to a research that was done by  Ella Striem-Amit and Amir Amedi of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the same areas in the brain are working when a blind person recognizes another person using sound as stimulation.

Another example of why the brain is malleable is that when blind people learn braille, their visual cortex becomes sensitive to touch instead vision. The input to the different parts of the brain can change, but the function of that part of the brain will stay the same.