The Human Brain

What are dreams really made of? Are humans the smartest animal? What causes schizophrenia? Travel inside the mind and find out how the human brain works.

E=mc2. The theory of relativity. An understanding of the speed of light. The idea that led to the completion of the atomic bomb. These ideas all came from one man's brain: Albert Einstein's.

It's safe to say that no one particularly wants an ice pick through the eye socket. And yet, for years, people who were mentally ill or merely "difficult" had parts of their brains removed this way. The natural question: Why?

You might classify yourself as right-brained or left-brained, depending on whether you tend toward logic or creativity. But what if a brain tumor changed it all, and one day you left your medical studies and devoted your days to art?

Do gender differences go beyond our reproductive organs? Popular culture would have you believe that men are from Mars, while women call Venus their planet of birth. Is it possible to finish the argument of nature versus nurture?

TV shows, movies and books depict characters that have suffered a bad injury to the head and have lost their memory. But could it really happen that fast? And will their memory ever return?

Compare neuroscientists with crackerjack detectives like Nancy Drew and Hercule Poirot, and the brain docs might come up short. After all, they have yet to crack the case on five big brain mysteries.

Religion is one of the three things you're never supposed to talk about if you don't want your dinner party to turn into a food fight. But what about looking at religion through the lens of science instead of faith? Is there a connection between our gray matters and pray matters?

You only use 10 percent of that big, wrinkled mass of smarts -- unless you listen to Mozart. At least, that's what we've heard about the brain. But how many common brain beliefs are just plain wrong?

When you envision the distant future, you might picture flying cars and wars with aliens. But besides being strapped to jet packs, what will humans be like? Will our new big brains put today's homo sapiens to shame?

Parents just don't understand. Scientists didn't understand either, until they got a good look inside the teenage brain -- and what they saw turned what we thought we knew on its head.

If bigger is better, then some of us have the advantage when it comes to brainpower. Human brains (and noggins) don't all look the same. Does size really matter? And if it does, who comes out on top?

Brain mapping is an ongoing effort to provide a complete picture of the brain's structure. It's a massive project, but scientists could use it to diagnose and treat diseases, test psychotropic drugs and even figure out where sarcasm comes from.

If you could control your dreams, what would you do? Grow wings and fly, travel to ancient Rome, dine with Marilyn Monroe, open opera season at the Met? It could be possible.

In the past, applying electricity to the brain was a painful measure of last resort. Now with lower power and electrodes surgically planted deep within the brain, it could be the answer to many debilitating diseases.

You may vaguely remember scratching your chicken pox at the age of 3, but do you remember the moment your body burst into the world? Most likely not.

Can your mirror lie? Though loved ones reassure you that your appearance is normal, all you see is your flawed, monstrous reflection. This is life with body dysmorphic disorder.

In the wild, are brains better than brawn? Find out when your fight-or-flight response is your friend and when it's your enemy.

People with schizophrenia can experience delusions, hallucinations and paranoia. But they don't have to suffer social isolation. Find out what successful treatments can help people with the disorder.

Memory is your only personal record of the past and of who you are as an individual. What if you woke up one morning and your memory was gone?

One of the top-prescribed sleeping pills may cause you to shuffle out of bed and sleepwalk to the fridge. Could Ambien be making you sleepy and hungry?

Anyone who has pulled an all-nighter knows that it won't kill you. But what if you pulled an all-nighter every night? What would happen to your body? And could you survive for long?

Imagine feeling like you were born into the wrong body. People with gender identity disorder (GID) suffer persistent dissatisfaction with their gender identity. But is it fair to call GID a psychological disorder?

According to UFO psychology research, many of those who report seeing UFOs may have psychological disorders. UFOs come to represent important symbols in their lives. Learn more about UFO psychology.

Sleepwalking is an intriguing phenomenon. How can a person be unconscious but still coordinate his or her limbs? And how do we know when we're really awake?

You get home from a long day, and all you want to do is see your family. But when you walk in the door, your family isn't your family. They've been replaced by imposters -- or you have capgras syndrome.