The Changing Brain: Alzheimer's Disease and Advances in Neuroscience

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Overview

In The Changing Brain, Ira Black tells the fascinating story of modern neuroscience. A rich, multifaceted tale spanning a century and taking place on multiple continents, it moves from Fascist Italy, with the discovery of nerve growth factor (NGF) by a young scientist working secretly in a makeshift laboratory in her bedroom, to current experiments in which transplanted, laboratory-grown cells lead to recovery and function in damaged brain regions. In the mid 1990s, a revolutionary new conception of the brain emerged—instead of the traditional view that the brain's role in perception, memory, learning, and emotions was based on a static, non-renewable network of brain cells and connections, research revealed that the human brain is an ever-changing, fantastically complex system that is continually being shaped and reshaped by a subtle interplay of genetic clues and life experiences.

To bridge the gap between abstract concepts and real-world experience, Dr. Black draws upon his expertise as a clinical neurologist to provide a dramatic account—the fictionalized story of a successful investment banker named Enoch Wallace and his battle with Alzheimer's disease—that vividly illuminates the narrative. From his first fleeting memory lapses to his final descent into dementia, each step in Wallace's decline becomes a window into another aspect of brain function and the latest groundbreaking research in neuroscience.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195156973
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 11/28/2002
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Ira B. Black, M.D., is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Neuroscience and Cell Biology at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway, New Jersey. He is a past president of the Society for Neuroscience of North America and is currently Chairman of the Society's Public Information Committee. His pioneering research in neuroscience has earned him numerous awards and honors including the Jacob Javits Award from the National Institutes of Health, the Levi-Montalcini Award, and the McKnight Award.

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Table of Contents

Preface: The Constancy of Change
Acknowledgments
Ch. 1 The Brain Connection 3
Ch. 2 The Survival Signal 23
Ch. 3 How to Live in the Brain 49
Ch. 4 Families 77
Ch. 5 Death and the Brain 99
Ch. 6 Brain Birthdays 123
Ch. 7 Brain Glue 149
Ch. 8 The Brain Captures Time 163
Ch. 9 Growth that Kills 199
Ch. 10 The Brain as a Renewable Resource 219
Epilogue: Enoch's Endgame 239
Afterword: Lest Ye See Miracles 243
Notes 249
Index 257
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