THEORETICAL FUNDAMENTALS

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MUSIC + BRAIN
Part 1   •   Part 2

Chronomedicine

Music as a Harmonic
Medical Data Carrier

The Special Status of the
Ear in the Organism

The Ear as a
Medical Instrument

The Significance of the
Soul to Medicine

The Significance of
our Consciousness
to Medicine

The Significance of the
Soul to Human Evolution

Scientists of Tuebingen discover the Brain Regions responsible for
Self Awareness

The Future of Pharmaceutics

Peter Hübner

 

 






Peter Hübner - Micro Music Laboratories

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Scientists of Tuebingen

discover the Brain Regions
responsible for Self Awareness

Over the last years empirical research into human con­scious­ness received an enormous upswing. One of the core questions here is concerning the presence and importance of self-awareness and its neuronal fundamentals.

The distinction between self and foreign is a biological necessity of all living beings. On the other side the ability to reflect on oneself and one’s own perceptions, is one of the highest cognitive performances. As a test for reflexive self-awareness goes the “Mirror-Test” performed in the seventies by G. Gallup and B. Amsterdam. Only small children from the 18th month on and adult chimpanzees recognise themselves in the mirror. This ability is attributed to the existence of self-awareness.

An international researcher team around the physicians from Tuebingen, Tilo Kircher and Mathias Bartels, in partnership with colleagues of the Universities of London, Cambridge and Oxford has now, for the first time, discovered the neuronal correlate of self-recognition. The results were published in the journal “Cognition” in January 2001.

In several experiments with healthy men they have measured the local neuronal activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging.
They presented to the test persons photos of their own face and of their partner (wife or friend) for comparison, in order to be able to control (“shorten out”) emotional reactions on known faces. For further comparison photos of unknown men and women were presented.

When looking at their own face broad areas of the right-hemispheric limbic system and the left frontal lope were activated, whereas when looking at the partner only a small area in the right hemisphere of the brain was activated.
The results show a dramatic difference in the neuronal processing of the own face in comparison to the one of an emotionally close person. In terms of brain evolution very young areas of the brain take part in self recognition: areas of the left frontal lobe, which are brought in connection with the ability of self reflection; but also the very old limbic system participates, which perhaps has to do with the diffuse feeling of “self” or “I”.

These studies could show for the first time, that “self-awareness” can be investigated by scientific methods. Through this, also completely new possibilities open up for studying frequent diseases as schizophrenia, which are accompanied by a fundamental disturbance of self-awareness.

Contact for more detailed information:

Universitätsklinikum Tübingen
Klinik für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie
Dr. Tilo Kircher
Tel. 0 70 71 / 29-8 23 11, Fax 0 70 71 / 29-41 41
E-Mail:
tilo.kircher@uni-tuebingen.de

https://www.innovations-report.de/html/berichte/interdisziplinaere_forschung/bericht-1437.html
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Medical Music Preparations on CD
A Digital Studio Recording Under the Artistic, Scientific and Technical Direction of the Composer and Muiscologist Peter Hübner
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Subject to change in the interests of scientific advancement.