Science

Consciousness traced to specific clusters of nerve cells in the brain

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Magnetic resonance imaging scans of the brain can reveal how clusters of nerve cells may be connected to each other

Larisa Bozhikova / Alamy

A map of brain structures involved in keeping us awake could eventually help to improve people’s recovery following surgery or comas.

Consciousness has two major components: wakefulness and awareness of both yourself and your surroundings. Many researchers have mapped the connections between nerves in the outer layer, the cortex, of the human brain that underpin awareness, but the anatomical basis of wakefulness – which is regulated in deeper regions of …

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