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Brave New Brain

Here, leading neuroscientist Nancy Andreasen offers a state-of-the-art look at what we know about the human brain and the human genome--and shows how these two vast branches of knowledge are coming together in a boldly ambitious effort to conquer mental illness.
Andreasen gives us an engaging and readable description of how it all works---from billions of neurons, to the tiny thalamus, to the moral monitor in our prefrontal cortex. She shows the progress made in mapping the human genome, whose 30,000 to 40,000 genes are almost all active in the brain. We
read gripping stories of the people who develop mental illness, the friends and relatives who share their suffering, the physicians who treat them, and the scientists who study them so that better treatments can be found. Four major disorders are covered--schizophrenia, manic depression, anxiety
disorders, and dementia--revealing what causes them and how they affect the mind and brain. Finally, the book shows how the powerful tools of genetics and neuroscience will be combined during the next decades to build healthier brains and minds.
By revealing how combining genome mapping with brain mapping can unlock the mysteries of mental illness, Andreasen offers a remarkably fresh perspective on these devastating diseases.
Product Details

Table of Contents

PART I: BROKEN BRAINS AND TROUBLED MINDS ; 1. Brave New Brain: Confronting the Burden of Mental Illness ; 2. A Waking Nightmare: Mental Illness and Ordinary People ; 3. Broken Brains, Troubled Minds: Being Blinded by False Dichotomies ; PART II: MIND MEETS MOLECULE ; 4. The Brain: The Mind's Dynamic Orchestra ; 5. Mapping the Genome: The Blueprint of Life ... and Death ; 6. Mapping the Mind: Using Neuroimaging to Observe How the Brain Thinks ; PART III: THE BURDEN OF MENTAL ILLNESS ; 7. Understanding What Mental Illnesses Are: The Past is Prologue to Progress ; 8. Schizophrenia: A Mind Divided ; 9. Mood Disorders: Riding the Emotional Roller Coaster ; 10. Dementias: A Death in Life ; 11. Anxiety Disorders: The Stress Regulator Goes Wild ; PART IV: BRAVE NEW BRAIN ; 12. O Brave New World: Conquering Mental Illness in the Era of the Genome ; References and Suggested Readings

About the Author

Nancy C. Andreasen, M.D., Ph.D., is Andrew H. Woods Chair of Psychiatry at The University of Iowa College of Medicine and the Editor-in-Chief of The American Journal of Psychiatry. She has written hundreds of articles and ten other books, including The Broken Brain, the first book to describe the importance of neurobiology to understanding mental illness. She lives in Iowa City and Santa Fe.


Informative and well written, this volume is highly recommended to clinicians as well as consumers, interested in understanding the new brain science and its applications to psychiatry. * Psychological Medicine, 35 *

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