Researchers claim that they have found a possible explanation for schizophrenia. The researchers pieced together the steps by which genes can increase a person’s risk of developing schizophrenia. That risk, they found, is tied to a natural process called synaptic pruning, in which the brain sheds weak or redundant connections between neurons as it matures. During adolescence and early adulthood, this activity takes place primarily in the section of the brain where thinking and planning skills are centered, known as the prefrontal cortex. People who carry genes that accelerate or intensify that pruning are at higher risk of developing schizophrenia than those who do not, the new study suggests. People with schizophrenia have a gene variant that apparently facilitates aggressive “tagging” of connections for pruning, in effect accelerating the process. (1)
So a diminished number of redundant neural connections means disease. Whereas an increased number of REDUNDANT neural connections means “health”.
Once upon a time we thought less.
Once upon a time we felt more.
Once upon a time we were philosophers…