Beautiful Brains

By Domenica Di Piazza, Editorial Director, TFCB

spiny neuron Not so long ago, my brother mentioned casually to me that he had once entertained the idea of becoming a neurosurgeon. In a way, his statement surprised me, since he’s made his life in publishing and in the law. But on the other hand, he’s a careful, methodical person in most aspects of his life, and those are indeed requisite traits for any neurosurgeon.

On the subject of neuroscience, Abrams has just published Portraits of the Mind, an amazing book by Columbia PhD neuroscience candidate Carl Schoonover about the beauty of the human brain. His book includes short essays by prominent neuroscientists along with a magnificent collection of dramatic images of the human brain, illustrated or photographed over the centuries. (The image above of spiny neurons is not from this book; it’s from PMC open access journal, via Wikimedia Commons.)

Click this link from the New York Times website for an amazing slide show of Schoonover’s collection of photomicrographs of the brain. Some of them (especially the one of the neocortex) bring to mind the dazzling holiday lights that are strung throughout my neighborhood at this time of year. The images tempt me to give my brother a copy of the book for Christmas this year….

Happy Holidays!

Check in again next week for more from TFCB.