Sperry (Sperry), Roger( The American neurologist, Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, 1981)
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Biography Sperry (Sperry), Roger
genus. August 20, 1913
American neurologist Roger Wolcott Sperry was born in Hartford (Conn.), in the family of Francis Bushnela Sperry, a banker, and Florence Sperry (Kramer). When Roger was 11 years old, his father died, and his mother, having trained, became deputy director of the local secondary school. Roger studied first at a public school Elmvuda (a suburb of Hartford), and then in high school in West Hartford. After school. enrolled at Oberlin College (Ohio) and in 1935. received a bachelor's degree in English language. He then continued his studies at Oberlin kollezhde and in 1937. defended his master's thesis in psychology.
Within another year with. studied at Oberlin College zoology, and then entered the University of Chicago, where he continued to study zoology under the direction of Paul Weiss. In studies on the organization of the nervous system, he showed that the synapses (the structures that ensure the transmission of impulses between nerve cells) are functioning with the help of chemical interaction. In 1941, Mr.. He received his doctorate from the University of Chicago.
During the next 5 years. worked as a research associate at Harvard University and, in conjunction with Karl Lashley, in Yerksskoy Biology Laboratory primates in Florida (at the time this lab was run by Harvard University). In this laboratory with. continued his studies on the operated animals with the brain - ie. these animals, which were surgically crossed paths connecting the left and right half of the brain (cerebral hemispheres). These paths are composed of the anterior commissure and corpus callosum, and the operation of their cutting the called commissurotomy.
In 1946, Mr.. S. returned to the University of Chicago in the position of assistant professor of anatomy in 1952. He was appointed associate professor of psychology. Here he continued to study the effect of commissurotomy on the activity of the brain in animals and led to significant progress in understanding the cognitive processes. Studies with. greatly helped to explain what cerebral mechanisms of memory, speech and perception of spatial relationships. Together with his colleague Ronald Meurs, he found that after commissurotomy 'each of the separated hemispheres behaved in such a way as if it did not understand what cognitive processes occur in the second hemisphere'. These experiments showed that the neural connections between the hemispheres are essential for a holistic sensory perception in experimental animals. Prior experiments with. thought that these neural connections do not play any important role in the activity of the brain.
In 1954, Mr.. S. was promoted to professor of psychobiology at the California Institute of Technology (in Pasadena). Continuing his work on the split-brain, C. in 1961. began working with Joseph Bogen and Philip Vogel, a neurosurgeon from the medical center named White in Los Angeles. Bogen and Vogel conducted in patients with incurable epilepsy commissurotomy, in order to prevent the spread of seizure activity from one hemisphere to another. S. with colleagues subjected these patients to psychological testing some time after surgery. The data, which they thus received, made a significant contribution to contemporary understanding of the specialized functions of the left and right hemispheres of the brain. In addition, experiments with. greatly changed the approaches to the study of cognitive processes and have important applications in diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the nervous system.
. Previously it was thought that the left hemisphere is dominant, and the bark of this hemisphere is responsible for more complex cognitive function (eg, speech) than the cortex of the right hemisphere
. This view was based on clinical observations of patients with organic changes in areas of the left (and, presumably, dominant) hemisphere, which violate specific cognitive functions. Thus, when injuries left hemisphere, affecting center of speech, impaired speech. Because such patients the right hemisphere is not assumed the function of damaged speech centers in the left hemisphere, it was thought that the right hemisphere is less developed. However, C. his colleagues discovered that the right hemisphere also has cognitive function.
With. with his team developed a new way to test for assessing cognitive function in both hemispheres independently. To do this, briefly display the images that are perceived alternately right and left fields of view. Since the optic nerves in the brain partially overlap, the information from the left visual field is processed by the cortex of the right hemisphere, and from the right visual field - the cortex of the left hemisphere. A typical test for patients with a 'forked' brain lay in the fact that the image of an object - such as apples - were brought against short-to-understand right field of view, therefore, it enters the cortex of the left hemisphere. Then C. or any of his colleagues asked the patient to name brought by the subject. If information about the image come in 'dominant hemisphere', the patient is always answered correctly: "It's an apple '. If the same image perceived by the left field of view and processed 'non-dominant "hemisphere, the patients either could not name the object, or claimed they had not seen any pictures. However, the patients could easily choose from different shapes of objects is an apple, which indicated that they have correctly interpreted the image. Thus, in these experiments showed that the cortex of the left hemisphere is responsible for the operation and verbal speech, and the bark of the right hemisphere controls the execution of non-verbal functions. In other words, the activities of the right hemisphere makes it possible to 'know' that this object is an apple, but is not sufficient that a person can express it in words. Upon further testing of patients with 'forked' brain has been shown that the right and left hemispheres perform different cognitive functions.
Studies with. and his staff from the California Institute of Technology have shown that the cognitive function of the left and right hemispheres differ in many respects. Left (dominant) hemisphere processes information sequentially and analytically. It copes well with the processing of temporal relationships, verbal operations, mathematical calculation, abstract thinking and interpretation of symbolic concepts. In addition, it has a highly developed ability to form speech functions. The contrary, the right (non-dominant) hemisphere processes information intuitively and simultaneously. It is better than the left, to cope with the tasks of interpreting visual images and spatial relationships - for example, recognition of. In addition, the right hemisphere more effectively recognize the complex relationship, sound images (eg, voice and intonation) and 'understand' music. S. his colleagues showed that both hemispheres possess the ability to consciousness and self-consciousness, as well as to realize social relationships.
Being a supporter of psychological interactionist school, with. Takes provision under which the regulation of the brain involved 'events', produced by endogenous (internal) mental activity, these events shaped the consciousness. In this regard, interactionist school is opposed to behaviourist, deny, or ignore such aspects of cognitive activity.
In 1981. S. 'for their discoveries concerning the functional specialization of cerebral hemispheres', was awarded half the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The second half was awarded jointly by David Hugh-white and Torsten Wiesel. In his Nobel lecture with. stressed their interactionist views, saying: 'Cognitive introspective psychology and the related science of cognitive function can no longer remain any longer out of sight of the experimenters ... The whole world of inner experiences, which for so long rejected the materialist science of the XX century., Was finally accepted it and entered the sphere of scientific research '.
In 1949, Mr.. S. married Norma Gay Dyupri. The family have two children - a son and daughter. During the rest with. loves to live outdoors, away from civilization. Among his hobbies - classes sculpture, painting, ceramics, folk dances and paleontology. In addition, he engaged in what he calls 'human problems', being firmly convinced that science can no longer enter into conflict with basic human values.
Among other awards with. - Howard Crosby Warren Medal of the American Society of experimental psychologists (1969), . Prize for outstanding scientific contribution to the American Psychological Association (1971), . William Thomson Wakeman Award National paraplegicheskogo Fund (1972), . Karl Spencer Lashley Award of the American Philosophical Society (1976), . Albert Lasker Award for basic medical research (1979) and Ralph Gerard Prize for outstanding contributions to neuroscience Neyronauchnogo Society (1979),
. He has honorary degrees from Cambridge University, Oberlin College, University of Chicago, Kenyon College and Rockefeller University. S. is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, Royal Society of London and the Pontifical Academy.