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April 13, iStock In medicine, magnetic resonance imaging MRI uses powerful magnetic fields and radio waves to show what's happening inside the body, producing dynamic images of our internal organs. Using similar technology that tracks blood flow, functional magnetic resonance imaging fMRI scans can show neuroscientists neural activity, indicating what parts of the brain light up when, for instance, a person thinks of an upsetting memory or starts craving cocaine.
Both require staying within a massive MRI machine for the length of the scan. There's some controversy over how scientists interpret fMRI data in particular—fMRI studies are based on the idea that an increase of blood flow to a region of the brain means more cellular activity there, but that might not be a completely accurate measure, and a report found that fMRI studies may have stunning rates of false positives.
But we're not here to talk about results. We're here to talk about all the weird, weird things scientists have asked people to do in MRI machines so that they could look at their brains and bodies.
From getting naked to going to the bathroom, people have been willing to do some unexpected activities in the name of science. Here are just a few of the oddest things that people have done in scanners at the behest of curious researchers. The study asked 11 other professional singers with different voice types to participate as well.
They found that the larynx rose with a singer's pitch, but got lower as the song got louder, and that certain factors, like how open their lips were, correlated more with how loud the singer was than how high they were singing.
The scientists concluded that future research on the larynx and the physical aspects of singing should take loudness into consideration. That study wasn't the first to take MRI images of singers. The videos either included footage of the human or robot being stroked or tickled, or the subject being beaten and choked.
The brain scans showed similar activity for people viewing both videos, suggesting that people might be able to feel similar empathy for robots as for people. During the scans, participants played a virtual ball-tossing game against two other players—whom they believed to be other study participants in other scanners—by watching a screen through goggles and pressing one of two keys to toss the ball to one of the other players.
They were actually playing against a computer that was programmed to eventually exclude the human player. At some point during the game, the computer-controlled players stopped throwing the human player the ball, causing them to feel excluded and ignored.
The researchers found that the excluded study subjects showed brain activation in regions similar to the ones seen in studies of physical pain. It's called magnetic resonance defecography.
Doctors use it to diagnose issues with rectal function, analyzing how the muscles of the pelvis are working and the cause of bowel issues.
The scan involves having ultrasound jelly and a catheter inserted into your butt, donning a diaper, and crawling inside an MRI scanner.
Then, on command, you clench your pelvic muscles in various ways as ordered by the doctor, eventually resulting in pooping out the ultrasound jelly and whatever else you might need to evacuate. In the late '90s, Dutch researcher Pek Van Andel and his colleagues at the University Hospital Groningen asked eight couples to come into their lab on a Saturday and have sex in the tube of an MRI scanner in order to analyze how genitals fit together during heterosexual intercourse.
Despite the surroundings, they apparently had a fine time. Meanwhile, other researchers are trying to capture scientific images of sex in different, sometimes even more awkward ways. For her book Bonk: The Curious Coupling Of Sex And Science, science writer Mary Roach and her husband had sex in a lab at University College London while a researcher stood next to them and held an ultrasound wand to her abdomen.
A reporter at Inside Jersey went to Rutgers to take part in the university's orgasm research herself in She brought her own sex toy, but the lab was kind enough to provide the lube. Over the course of their work, Rutgers researchers have found that when people bring themselves to orgasm within an fMRI machine, it activates more than 30 brain systems, including ones that you wouldn't think would be involved in getting off, like the prefrontal cortex, which is associated with problem solving and judgment.
For a study published in17 young composers were asked to create a piece of music while Chinese researchers examined their brain activity.I wouldn't call her a "science writer", exactly. Shes a nonfiction writer who writes about a lot of scientifically-inspired topics.
Id put her as more of a human-interest writer, except with a uniquely inquisitive and thoughtful take on it*. This was one of the most interesting, enlightening books that I have read in awhile!
My bachelor's degree is in biological sciences, but I am a civil rights lawyer, so I appreciated her approach that touched on not just the science, but also public policy and human rights issues implicated by .
Congratulations! You are just about to tune into the swellest station on the comic book airwaves. Do you realize that not only can you read the best books on the newsstand, but now you can also listen to your favorite characters ALL FOR FREE!!. BibMe Free Bibliography & Citation Maker - MLA, APA, Chicago, Harvard.
Position Description for Peacebuilding Coordinator, Mennonite Central Committee, Akron, PA or Winnipeg, MB The Peacebuilding Coordinator is a member of the Planning, Learning, and Disaster Response (PLDR) Department and is supervised by one of the department’s Co-Directors. HOTLINKS: MISCELLANEOUS SCIENCE FICTION/FANTASY/HORROR FILMS My Competitors: other websites of film lists X-Rated Sci-Fi/Fantasy Videos Sci-Fi Attacks on Los Angeles See also TIME TRAVEL: MOVIES AND TV-MOVIES ABOUT TIME TRAVEL OR TIME-LOOPS, below. A review of Mary Roach's "Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void," the offbeat science writer's look at the intimate details of the lives of astronauts in space.
A review of Mary Roach's "Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void," the offbeat science writer's look at the intimate details of the lives of astronauts in space.
Mary Roach is the author of Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, among other books. Her writing has appeared in Outside, Wired, National Geographic, and The New York Times Magazine, among others. She lives in Oakland, California.