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Brain researcher with a sense for touch

Jacques Cousteau was his first big role model. In the 1960s, as David Linden grew up as a "Beach Boy" in Santa Monica, were "constantly" films of the sea Ex

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Brain researcher with a sense for touch

Jacques Cousteau was his first big role model. In the 1960s, as David Linden grew up as a "Beach Boy" in Santa Monica, were "constantly" films of the sea Explorer on television. "I wanted to be like Cousteau, a marine biologist," recalls Linden, "half the class in my high school had a desire for this Profession."

But there was another influence: Lindens father has treated in his practice of the Rich and famous from the entertainment industry, "the kind of people that had the money and the time to talk five times a week with a psychoanalyst", as he put it, Linden. "I thought that was pretty interesting when the father, at dinner, told of a time," recalls the 57-Year-old at our Meeting on the sidelines of the European trend day at the Gottlieb-Duttweiler Institute in Rüschlikon. He himself, so his Plan at that time, but wanted to treat no Celebrities, but much prefer to find out what's going on in the interior of the head, in the brain. "This is the real secret."

In College, Linden was still, however, undecided: Should he study marine biology? Or brain research? He threw the study at the University of California, Berkeley, for the time being, hired as a diver on a boat accessories company, and was thus able to examine off the coast of southern California, what is the influence of the cooling water of a nuclear power plant has on the local marine Ecosystem. Because he realized that the sea ecology is not yet Right for him. "This is a purely observational science," he says. "But I wanted to manipulate things, experimental work."

nerve cells can regrow

David Linden was so brain researchers. After doctoral work at Northwestern University and a research stay in the laboratories of the Swiss pharmaceutical company Hoffmann-La Roche in New Jersey, he received an appointment to the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. There, he conducts research today, 28 years later, and does this very successfully, to Learn, among other things, the issues, and memory and nerve regeneration after injury.

In this area, he and his Team have made two years ago made a startling discovery. Contrary to the Dogma that nerves can't regenerate cells in the brain and in the spinal cord, the researchers found that a class of nerve cells can restore their cable-like projections (axons). Why you do this and whether the knowledge for the therapy of brain injuries, or transverse paralysis of the Benefit cut will be, but it is still unclear.

"touch to convey togetherness," says David Linden. Photo: iStock

Also in memory research Linden shakes a Dogma. There is a great Paradox, he says. From mice to try and, you know, that in the case of females, the number of nerve connections in a brain region called the Hippocampus, the memory-interface, variable in the course of the cycle by 30 percent. In addition, you know that these nerve connections, the "synapses", the memory to store content. On people hot transfer, is mulling Linden, that women would have to lose in each cycle, a third of your memory, but the opposite was the case: "In the case of almost any memory test, women perform better." Linden would like to find out now, how could this Paradox be explained.

Linden is not only a creative spirit, but also elsewhere talented. He like to be photographed at leisure, and writes popular books. The latter he does, especially in the evening. In his book, "High", for example, it is the desire of our brains to good feelings; in "The Accidental Mind" is how he describes the human brain as a "mended mess". – What's that, a mess? – Clearly, the brain is not beautiful in the sense that it can do amazing things, says Linden, but the Design was "crazy". "We still use the structures that are 650 million years old, and of Relatives of today's jellyfish and corals invented have been."

The sense of touch is not replaceable

In his recent book, "Touch" focuses on Linden, the sense of touch – and does so with a lot of heart blood. The sense of touch is for the man to be Central, not replaceable like the other senses, and yet hardly ever mention it. "You can blind be born as a human is completely normal," says Linden, the Same applies to the deaf-Born. The sense of touch is not optional.

"If children live in the first two to three years, little touched, and stroked, be cuddled, develops a Disaster," says Linden. Their growth was affected, as well as the motor and cognitive development. In addition, the children suffer later more likely to have Diabetes, Obesity and cardiovascular diseases. All the you know of Romanian children who grew up at the time of the dictator Nicolae Ceausescu in the 1970s and 1980s in orphanages – almost without respect of persons and without touch. The early childhood period is absolutely critical, says Linden. "A deficit can be made good."

later in life, according to Linden touches important. "You are our social glue." Was the family team, in school, in sports. "Social touch to convey warmth and togetherness." Therefore, Linden is skeptical about the widespread rules that teachers and coaches children should not even touch. "It is a missed opportunity to form a community." Clearly, the touches, the Situation would have to be appropriate, Incidents should be avoided at all costs. And there are also children who want to be touched.

in The context of a contact is key

The sense of touch is the most primal of all the senses, says Linden. He developed an early interest in the mother's womb. He is also the most emotional, because the touch receptors on our body not only have a direct connection to the so-called somatosensory cortex – this tells us where and how strongly we are affected, but also to a brain region called the Insula, which processes emotions. If the partner or the Partner gently caresses the lips, we feel it quite differently, as if this is the dentist is doing. In other words, in The context of a contact plays a very important role in how we perceive this. It is therefore no coincidence that we speak in emotions of "feelings", of the "touching" moments, says Linden. "And this in almost all the languages of the world."

And: touches are for our well-being so important that some people even resort to Tricks in order to get cuddles, tells Linden to the end. At the airport, for example, there are always travelers who refuse to walk through the Scanner. "You want to be scanned."

(editing Tamedia)

Created: 29.03.2019, 19:35 PM

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