Science Saturdays: Your Brian on Crack

This is a pretty timely video. What I find so astounding about the whole Rob Ford thing, is that he was able to continue on as mayor. This is a really good video talking about the excess of dopamine in the synapses of the brain. As you can see, by inhibiting the reuptake of naturally occurring dopamine, the brain becomes dependent on external forms of dopamine (drugs). Thus, addiction happens very quickly and hits very hard.

Moreover, the damage of the ventral tagmental area–the primary producer of dopamine for the brain (the other being the substantia nigra)–causes an immense decrease of dopamine, as a whole, to the entire brain. This causes auditory, visual, and physiological hallucinations. Of course, this is after prolonged use, but still.

Being able to serve as mayor while taking a drug whose addictive properties are well documented is incredible. Not to mention the effect the drug has on the processing segments of the brain, Robbie Ford is at a huge biological disadvantage running one of the four largest cities in North America–not to mention he’s very overweight.

So there you have it: the mayor of Toronto is not only comedically overweight, but also is psychologically affected by recreational drug use. I haven’t even talked about the effects drinking alcohol has on the brain! Holy reduced gray matter and Korsakoff’s syndrome, Batman!

Post Script: But I mean, is there any way a man this aware of his surroundings suffers from psychobiological disadvantages?

ford camera

 

That’s what I thought.

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