Where in the Brain Does Deception Lie?

Neuroscience
640px-Jonathan_G_Meath_portrays_Santa_Claus

Santa’s favorite reindeer is Rudolph, of course. Source: Jonathan G. Meath (Wikimedia Commons)

By: Dan Hass, 2nd year PhD candidate in the Neuroscience Graduate Program

When my 8-year old niece asks me what Santa Claus’s favorite reindeer is, I do not tell her that Santa does not actually exist. I try to keep her as happy as possible, and I tell a white lie.

Lying is not an uncommon phenomenon. It is estimated that, on average, Americans lie 1.65 times daily.

While most of these are white lies, a study in the United Kingdom found that approximately one out of every two people tells a self-defined ‘big lie’ every day. Although these data are not evenly distributed (a few people who lie a lot may skew the statistics), deception is a part of our every day life [1].

What’s it like to get an MRI?

Neuroscience

mri_womanBy: Jordan Gaines Lewis, 3rd year PhD candidate in the Neuroscience Program

During my first year at Penn State College of Medicine, I participated in an MRI research study. I laid in an MRI machine for 45 minutes and looked at pictures of chocolate while smelling chocolate odors. Tough life, right?

(Hershey really is the sweetest place on Earth…even in the labs!)

The MRI machine is rather big, rather loud (I wore headphones), and…rather claustrophobic. But it operates on a rather GENIUS principle!