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Could scientists peek into your dreams?

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Posted April 5, 2013
In small study, computer programs and brain MRIs identified visual images during sleep.

In small study, computer programs and brain MRIs identified visual images during sleep.

Talk about mind reading. Researchers have discovered a potential way to decode your dreams, predicting the content of the visual imagery you’ve experienced on the basis of neural activity recorded during sleep.

Visual experiences you have when dreaming are detectable by the same type of brain activity that occurs when looking at actual images when you’re awake, the small new study suggests.

The scientists created decoding computer programs based on brain activity measured while wide-awake study participants looked at certain images. Then, right after being awakened from the early stages of sleep, the researchers asked the subjects to describe the dream they were having before being disturbed.

The researchers used functional MRI to monitor brain activity of the participants and polysomnography to record the physical changes that occur during sleep. They compared evidence of brain activity when participants were awake and looking at real images to the brain activity they saw when participants were dreaming, when they were in light—or early—sleep. Functional MRIs directly measure blood flow in the brain, providing information on brain activity.

Read more at: MedicalXpress.com

 

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