Low-Cost Travel in Neurons
Pierre J. Magistretti, director of the Brain Mind Institute, has published an article in the magazine Science which came out today.
The article, with the adventurous title “Low-Cost Travel in Neurons,” seeks to clarify a debate taking place in the Neurobiological arena about energy use in the brain. The import of this domain may not appear obvious at first, but as the article explains, “about 20% of the energy consumed by the body sustains brain function, yet the brain represents only 2 % of human body mass.” How exactly the brain uses this energy is at the center of the debate which has been brought on, in part, by recent advances in imaging techniques such as positron emission tomography and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that give real time imaging data of these processes. Magistretti and his team at EPFL have first hand access to some of the best imaging materials available in the new Life Sciences building, inaugurated at the beginning of this month.