'Human Brains Have Unique 'Fingerprint

Saturday, December 3, 2016 - 20:24

Researchers of Carnegie Mellon University have proven that the human brain is as unique as ones fingerprint.

Engadget reports that Carnegie Mellon researchers developed a way to "fingerprint" the human brain using diffusion MRI and found that its structural connections are so unique, they can be used to identify individuals.

This research published in PLOS revealed that researchers used the diffusion MRI results of 699 subjects' brains. Diffusion MRI uses the diffusion process of water molecules in biological tissues to generate contrast in images.

They then took those results and calculated the distribution of water in the point-by-point connections (called local connectome) of the brains' white matter pathways. What they found was that each person has a unique local connectome, much like a fingerprint and even twins' local connectomes are only 12 percent similar to each other.

"This confirms something that we've always assumed in neuroscience — that connectivity patterns in your brain are unique to you. This means that many of your life experiences are somehow reflected in the connectivity of your brain. Thus we can start to look at how shared experiences, for example poverty or people who have the same pathological disease, are reflected in your brain connections, opening the door for potential new medical biomarkers for certain health concerns," said Timothy Verstynen, one of the researchers from Carnegie Mellon.

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