Free research paper on Neuroscience:
Neuroscience denotes the scientific study of the nervous system, both in terms of its structure and its operation, from the molecular level to the level of organs such as the brain, or even the whole body. Appeared originally as a branch of biology, neuroscience has rapidly evolved into a more interdisciplinary discipline which are today at the crossroads of medical, psychological, chemical, computer sciences and mathematics. This enlargement of the conceptual and methodological arsenal of neuroscience goes with a variety of approaches in the study of the molecular, cellular, developmental, evolutional, anatomical, medical, physiological, genetic, cognitive, computational, or other aspects.
In the mainstream media, neuroscience are often presented in terms of cognitive neuroscience, particularly the works using brain imaging, although it is a subset of the scientific field that constitute the neurosciences.
The term “neurosciences” appeared in the late 1960s to designate the branch of biological science that deals with the study of the nervous system, especially from the electrophysiological viewpoint, as it is illustrated by the works of then future Nobel laureates David Hubel and Torsten Wiesel, who have recorded the electrical responses of neurons in the visual cortex of the cat according to the images presented to him. However, as a scientific discipline, neuroscience are in line with a much older scientific approach that has received various labels according to the times and methods it used.
Although the term dates from the twentieth century, the anatomical study of the nervous system directly inherits the work of anatomists and physicians of the Renaissance period, such as Andreas Vesalius. Before that, many physicians were interested in the functioning of the nervous system and its relationship to thinking. If the name of the “father” of the Hippocratic medicine remains associated with the discovery of the role of the brain in mental functions, the history of what is known today as neurology and psychiatry has its origins in the medical treatises of ancient Egypt and through the writings of the Roman (Galen), and Arab-Muslim (Averroes) physicians and later in the work of Descartes. These announce a time of scientific advances that establish a bridge between psychology, anatomy, and physiology, with very direct impact on philosophical thinking of the Enlightenment.
The study of the nervous system indeed actually started in the eighteenth century by the discovery of bioelectromagnetics. During the nineteenth century, the work on “animal electricity” experienced great progress. At the end of the century, in 1875, the first observations of electrical activity in connection with the behavior were be described by an English physician Richard Caton.
Meanwhile, in the late nineteenth century, the progress in optics and chemistry helped to discover through histological staining of nervous tissue and microscopic observation, the structure and organization of neurons system. Two essential figures of this discovery, Camillo Golgi and Santiago Ramón y Cajal shared both the Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine in 1906.
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