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Is it possible to understand human behavior by scanning his brain: scientists answer They write about it on Habré

The user “Habr” published a translation of the article of the publication Nature. This article is devoted to the study of the relationship between people’s behavior and the results of their brain scans. Read more about the results of the study – in the material.

Neuroscientist Scott Marek has conducted an extensive study on the development of the brain of children. To do this, he and his colleagues analyzed data on 2,000 children. Gradually, the number of these data increased. As a result, it turned out that there is practically no connection between brain functions, human behavior and the results of brain scans. More precisely, this information is not enough to accurately draw a conclusion about the behavior of the child.

True, a number of scientists still believe that a more detailed study of the connections between the brain and human behavior will lead to reliable conclusions. That is, in their opinion, there is a chance that the data obtained by the neuroscientist and his team are incorrect.
Is it possible to understand human behavior by scanning his brain: scientists answer

Scott Marek and Niko Dosenbach (a neuroscientist at WashU) and other scientists also found, when comparing MRI scan data and the behavior of study participants, that the repetition of some associations or connections between them was quite rare and not in all scientific papers. For example, if we take a study with 2,000 people, then these associations were repeated in only 25% of cases, and if we talk about an experiment with 500 people or less, then reliable associations occurred only in 5% of cases.

Therefore, brain imaging studies must be based on extremely large sample sizes. According to Marek, it is difficult to say exactly how many people should participate in such a study, but there should definitely be at least several thousand of them.

News items cannot be equated with a doctor’s prescription. Before making a decision, consult with a specialist.

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