Containing nearly 100 billion neurons, the brain is by far the body’s most complex organ. Understanding how the brain works is crucial to finding new ways to treat complex and devastating neurological diseases.
The brain is a central component of the nervous system, a network that transmits signals to and from different parts of the body, and regulates involuntary and voluntary actions. Specialised nerve cells, or neurons, and supporting non-neuronal cells, called glia, form the basic building blocks of the nervous system.
The brain and nervous system regulate a wide variety of essential functions, including:
Thinking, attention, reasoning and feeling emotions
Absorbing and processing sensory information such as vision, sound, and smell
Learning new information and committing it to memory
Sleep and dreaming
Physical movement and posture when walking, running, sitting or standing
Regulating body temperature, breathing, heart rate and blood pressure
Learn about the normal structures and functions of the brain