Researchers have demonstrated a new brain scanner that can produce ‘3D movies of the brain’ at 100 frames per second.
It will allow anaesthetists a moment-by-moment account of patients undergoing major surgery or for close monitoring of trauma, such as head injury or stroke.
Temporal brain scanning, which can see how the brain reacts to various stimuli, already exists in the form of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). This technology works by tracking changes in blood flow that are indicative of underlying neural activity. Yet because it based on the principle that active neurons demand oxygen, there is a natural lag in the time it takes blood flow to respond.