Science Questions

Does the brain rewire around damage?

Sun, 25th Oct 2009

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Question

John asked:

Does the brain rewires around damage and are those re-wired areas also degraded?

Answer

What he’s referring to is a concept called plasticity and this is where nerve cells can change the connections they make from one set of nerve cells to the other set of nerve cells and in this way, there’s a limited capacity of a bit of a brain that’s damage so that signals can no longer go through.  Then other networks or other weaker connections can be strengthened to help to bypass that blockage.  There’s no degradation that goes on.  There’s merely a strengthening, a reinforcement or a bypass via other bits of the brain to get around an obstruction or a problem which was holding things up.

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