Animals Science

‘Meditating Mice’ Reveal Secrets Of Mindfulness Training

We, humans use to meditate. Can meditation be beneficial to the mouse also? Well, as per a new research, the answer is YES.

Recently, some researchers from the University of Oregon in Eugene compared the brain patterns of the human meditators with the mice’s brain. Well, as per the experiments, the meditating mice are less stressed and more relaxed actually.

A research, one month before, has shown that an attentive meditation is really effective for the humans both physically and mentally. The reason is that it basically eliminates all the anxiety from you and reduces the amount of Cortisol, the stress hormone that is present in your blood.

Even as per the imaging researches of the mediator’s brains also found out a growing function in the ACC (Anterior Cingulated Cortex). Particularly this is an area of the brain where many functions happen with the inclusion of cognitive control and emotional regulation.

Scientists have already found out that meditation is positively effective for the human brains. And so, the researchers took a step for making a mouse model which could imitate the brain of a human meditator. By this process, researchers only want to examine the low-level biology of meditation, as per Cris Niell, a neuroscientist at the University of Oregon, who is the leader of this research. And they named this study The Mouse Meditation Project.

According to Aldis Weible, the first author on the study and a researcher at the Institute of Neuroscience of the University of Oregon, every person gets the particular oscillations in their ACC after having a meditation, but he/she becomes more powerful and stronger after doing it.

1466498940_2d5d0de947_z “Meditation, to my mind, implies an intentional choice to deploy attention in a particular way, with qualities of curiosity, patience, equanimity and care,” says Willem Kuyken

Well, the researchers know this very clearly that mice can’t meditate in a conventional way, but they were just wondering whether they would be able to make the ACC of the mice oscillate in the similar rhythm like human meditators.

For doing this, they genetically created the mice which have a particular protein in their brains which cause neurones to fire while they are visible in the light. Even they connected a light source to the brains of the mice so they could show these proteins to light’s various patterns. The prime motto of the researchers was to change the pattern of activity in the brain region.

After the test, the mice that were shown to the similar patterns exposed by the human meditators were more relaxed by getting this meditation therapy. Even after placing them in a box which had a light and dark side, the meditating mice were interested in exploring the light side more. So, these behaviours were the signal that the mice were de-stressed and have had the same behavioural effects of meditation like the humans.

As per researchers, the mice’s brains oscillate at the similar pace like a human meditator’s brain, i.e. nearly 8 times per second. Even the researchers wonder whether the same protocol could be utilised one day in order to help people for getting recovery from post-traumatic stress disorder or stroke with more speed.

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