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Creating Modern Neuroscience: The Revolutionary 1950s

Yale Medicine Magazine, 2010 - Autumn


by Gordon M. Shepherd, M.D., D.Phil., professor of neurobiology (Oxford University Press) This book provides a new multidisciplinary understanding of the revolution of the 1950s that created the modern field of neuroscience. Shepherd focuses on the creative process itself—on understanding how a combination of unique personalities, innovative hypotheses, and new methods led to a remarkable number of advances. His history describes dozens of discoveries, including DNA; growth factors; excitability; synapses; the role of dopamine in Parkinson disease; visual processing; the cortical column; the reticular activating system and REM sleep, stress, learning, and memory. The text also covers the development of clinical neuroscience from Cushing and Penfield to psycho-surgery and brain energy metabolism to the present-day use of psychoactive drugs.

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