This week marks the annual Brain Awareness Week, seven days dedicated to expanding public awareness of neurological disorders, creating support for biomedical research, and inspiring a new generation of scientists.

Neuroscience communities around the world will participate by hosting open houses in research labs, giving lectures about the brain and various diseases, and presenting educational activities for people of all ages.

At St. Thomas, the PSYC 401 Physiological Psychology class hosted 50 Brooklyn Center middle-school students and taught them about neurological concepts through games and activities. Other events are being held throughout the state and country this week; view the schedule on the Dana Foundation website.

The PSYC 401 class asks – did you know?

  • A person’s body contains about 100 billion neurons, with each neuron averaging 7,000 different connections to other neurons. This results in more combinations than elementary particles in the universe.
  • The brain and nervous system begin to grow at three to four weeks after conception.
  • There are more than 1,000 brain- and nervous-system disorders that account for more hospitalizations than heart disease and cancer combined, affecting more than 50 million Americans annually.

To read more about the brain and its abilities, download a PDF from the Society for Neuroscience.