UNFOLDING THE DAMAGED BRAIN
Dr Ursula Rohlwink, neuroscience fellow, Neuroscience Institute, University of Cape Town
The brain, made up of furrows and folds that hold the unmatched function and full potential of human kind, is our most important organ. Yet it is fragile, buried within a protective bony cavity and supported by intricate systems that preserve its integrity. Loss of brain function, an unfortunate reality for many, can be devastating. Understanding the healthy brain is a tremendous challenge: how do we go about unfolding the injured brain? This course offers insight into how the injured brain is investigated, using meningitis as a case study. Participants will gain familiarity with the healthy brain (structure and function) before encountering techniques to observe the injured brain macroscopically, including neurosurgery, endoscopy, imaging and neuro-monitoring, as well as microscopically, covering individual brain cells and their function down to the DNA level. The challenges of managing the injured brain and exciting developments that lie ahead will also be touched upon.