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  • Researchers use genetics and optics to control brain cell activity
  • Studying fruit fly brains teaches us about learning and memory
  • People control flying robots with brain-machine interface technology
  • New techniques reveal the brain's complexity
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We have archived the special report, "Understading the Brain," and this information may be outdated.

Understanding the Brain — NSF's goal is to enable scientific understanding of the full complexity of the brain, in action and in context, through targeted, cross-disciplinary investments in research, technology, and workforce development. Understanding the Brain activities promise innovative and integrated solutions to challenges in our ability to predict how collective interactions between brain function and our physical and social environment enable complex behavior. NSF's strategic investments will support research and infrastructure designed to transform our view of who we are and how we relate to and interact with each other and our ever-changing environment.

Scientists and engineers have studied the brain for decades, yet there are many mysteries that remain unsolved. New research is underway to develop and use cutting-edge technologies to better understand the brain. "Mysteries of the Brain" is produced by NBC Learn in partnership with the National Science Foundation. More Video >>
Inside your head, a three-pound multitasking marvel is hard at work for you 24/7. Explorers of the Brain takes you to the front lines of discovery in neuroscience, where scientists and engineers are bringing us ever closer to understanding how and why your brain does what it does. Find out what they're learning in this exciting radio documentary.

Slide Show Image Credits

  1. Researchers Use Genetics and Optics to Control Brain Cell Activity. Credit: Sputnik Animation, McGovern Institute, Ed Boyden
  2. Studying Fruit Fly Brains Teaches Us about Learning and Memory. Credit: J. Truman and H-H Li
  3. People Control Robots with Brain-Machine Interface Technology. Credit: University of Minnesota
  4. New Techniques Reveal the Brain's Complexity. Credit: Deisseroth Lab


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Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations presented in this material are only those of the presenter grantee/researcher, author, or agency employee; and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.